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So…Where ARE the Women in I.T.?

In 2005, The Anita Borg Institute for Women in Technology published a report entitled “Where are the Women in Information Technology?”  Six years later, we’re still asking that same question—the focus of an article this week in Bloomberg/Business Week. Shockingly, the article reports that although women hold about half the jobs in the U.S. economy, they represent less than 25 percent of science, technology, engineering and math positions. Ultimately, we need to not only stem the flow of women leaving the industry, but also leaving the associated fields of study in college.

Sunday evening, at a fundraiser dinner, a friend of mine who works for another technology company raised this same question. Looking around the room, she pointed out several of the brightest minds in technology, who happen to be women, and questioned why they weren’t more visible within their organizations and within the industry. Clearly, there’s an opportunity for our industry to make a big shift, but what will it take?

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Telepresence An Indispensible Technology for K-12 Classrooms

If you were to walk into any school these days—whether an elementary, middle, or high school—you would see students using some degree of technology. Whether it’s a computer in a lab, a tablet, or an interactive whiteboard, technology has no doubt made its way into students’ schooldays.

The trend towards technology in education stands to proliferate: according to Education Week, the Obama administration and the U.S. Department of Education rank facilitating technology access as their top goal during tough economic times. With this goal in mind, telepresence should rank highly on the list of technologies designated for schools—after all, telepresence offers several solutions to maintaining education quality under ever-tightening budgets.

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Turkish University Grooms Students for Roles in Modern Life

It is heartening to note that education systems around the world are seriously working towards achieving the goal of helping students excel both academically and as members of society. Yasar University located in Izmir, Turkey is one of the leading education institutions that aims at creating an infrastructure and environment that not only has the capacity to meet future growth but also prepare students for their roles in modern life.

Izmir is a large metropolis with a population of 3.35 million, making it the third most populous city of Turkey. Lying on an advantageous location at the head of a gulf running down in a deep indentation midway on the western Anatolian coast, Izmir is widely regarded as one of the most progressive Turkish cities in terms of its values, lifestyle, modernism, dynamism and gender roles. The city has always been governed by fresh inspirations which stems from the readiness of its citizens to adopt novelties and new projects. A modern, cutting-edge, smart education system being one of them.

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In Between the Numbers: The “Learner” Segment of Consumers: Should Retail Take an Education Class?

The sight of Crayola crayons stacked high to fly at the local mass merchant brought these back-to-school thoughts to mind.

 Colleague Dr. Jeff Loucks and I surveyed US consumers this past spring regarding their confidence – or lack thereof – in using consumer electronics devices and content services.

 No surprise that we found a cluster of early adopters, a male-dominant group of device-loving consumers of all forms of bits and bytes.

 What was surprising – at least at first glance – was the discovery of a group that we might call “learners” that is more than twice the size of the early adoption group.

 The “learner” group was no stranger to technology: No Luddites among the Learners. What distinguished them was that they didn’t know how to do all the things they might like to do and wanted to learn more.

 This suggests they would respond with enthusiasm – and more importantly, with Visa and MasterCards – to the brand that was willing to invest in their education.

 Consider for a moment: Pew Research estimates that 21% of American adults search online for product information on a typical day. That’s about 49 million persons. Consider that comScore estimated that last year there were six million Internet searches for dining recipes – every day.

Combine this research with the Pew and comScore numbers, and a sharp-edged hypothesis begins to emerge:

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Back to School with Cisco Unified Computing System and Nexus Switching

Guest post by Omar Sultan, Senior Manager for Cisco Data Center Architecture

Seattle University’s CTO Dan Duffy believes Cisco UCS and a VDI will improve students’ experiences in classes within every college on campus.

It’s that time of year again:  Back to School. With all kinds of technology providing new ways to learn, today’s students are taking advantage of mobile devices and tablets to log on to classes remotely from home, using online learning tools, and turning in assignments virtually.  For example, The Network, Cisco’s technology news site, recently posted an article about innovative ways in which students are learning:  How Cloud Computing is Revolutionizing Education. This article describes how cloud computing provides an innovative alternative to bricks-and-mortar schooling and enables personal and interactive learning.

We’re seeing more educational customers evolving their data centers to take advantage of the latest trends in cloud computing and virtual desktop solutions, to support new student learning approaches.  In addition, of course, saving IT costs is a key priority for these educational institutions.

Let the class begin!

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