By: J.D. Ross
(315) 443-3094

The School of Information Studies (iSchool) hosted 60 high school junior and senior girls over the past two days in an inaugural overnight retreat program called The It Girls.

The program, organized by iSchool undergraduate recruitment staff members Dori Farah and Julie Walas, offered a way for high school girls to learn about technology education and careers via mentors and programming from the iSchool.

As the girls arrived in Syracuse on Thursday afternoon, they were greeted by mentors and participated in technology activities and learning sessions with peer advisors, graduate students and the iSchool recruitment team.  After dinner, the girls were broken into teams to work on an overnight challenge, where they were asked to conceptualize technology-based solutions to adolescent issues such as texting while driving, online bullying, and time management and organization.

After attending the University-wide Fall Reception on Friday morning, the girls returned to deliver their group presentations.

“We set out to create an experience that we hope will inspire them to consider an education and career in technology,” said Walas, the Director of Undergraduate Recruitment for the iSchool. “We’re responding to a call to action. Our country is experiencing a deficit of female talent and interest in the STEM disciplines, and we want to help. It is a loss for us not have enough of these women – inherently collaborative, intuitive, inquisitive, multi-tasking leaders – in our community of information innovators.”