Xero, Cogent and digital agencies Deepend and August are among the first partners to sign up to the initiative and Code Like a Girl says students on a break from university, recent graduates, or those seeking a career change who are interested in coding, robotics, artificial intelligence and design are encouraged to apply.
The first intake will commence in January 2018, with the first group to commence their internships in Melbourne.
Vanessa Doake, co-founder of Code Like A Girl, says the initiative is important to help develop pathways for girls into technology.
“We’re launching the internship programme to help address this imbalance and work with Australian companies to train and develop the talent they need to be competitive and thrive,” she says.
Doake says a Code Like A Girl internship will open the door to some of Australia's top tech companies. “We want to ensure this is a national programme. Tech is the next frontier in wealth and job creation, which is why programmes like this are essential to ensure everyone, regardless of socio-economic background has the opportunity to participate. Not only is it free to become an apprentice, but you'll get paid while learning on the job,” she says.
“There are normally two main options to enter the tech industry in Australia, you either study computer science at a tertiary level, which can be time and cost prohibitive and not practical if you have financial or family commitments or you undertake an immersive coding programme which can cost upwards of $15,000 and require full-time study for at least three months, again not practical if you're looking for a career change or have other commitments to manage.”
Doake also says a Code Like a Girl's internship is designed to help master professional and technical skills, gain valuable experience and “develop a network to help build their dream career in tech”.
“What matters most is your desire to learn and your passion for technology. If you have strong communication skills, high emotional intelligence and maturity, you'll make an excellent intern.
“For participating technology companies, they’ll be involved in developing and training for skills they need in their business and improving diversity at the same time.”
Code Like a Girl interns will work on-site at a leading Australian tech company, choose whether they’ll work there for three months, six or 12 months and select whether they want to work full-time or part-time around their other commitments – with most partners taking one apprentice a year with the aim of transitioning after completion to a permanent role.
James O'Reilly, Talent Acquisition Lead, Xero Australia, said, “The unfortunate reality is there currently aren't enough tech workers in Australia to meet the demands. At Xero, we are taking steps to invest in local talent to stay ahead of the curve, and ensure that Australian tech remains competitive. Code Like a Girl's new internship programme is an important initiative for us to combat this talent shortage by promoting careers in tech to interested females and at the same time helping us build cognitively diverse teams.”
Doake says Code Like A Girl will support the programme, providing all interns with a Code Like A Girl mentor, regular 1-on-1 coaching sessions and will facilitate personal and professional development sessions on topics such as how to ace the technical interview, how to build your CV and portfolio, how to overcome imposter syndrome and how to find a job you will love.
Regular networking opportunities with other industry partners will also be provided.
To apply for an internship or to register interest as a partner organisation, click here.