June 25, 2018

Women in Technology Scholarships (for Cyber Security) at Willis College: Apply today!

Willis College is awarding a prestigious scholarship for women in Technology worth a total of $75,000

Application deadline is July 1st 2018


Please apply for the Women in Technology Scholarships (WITS) in Cybersecurity Education, proudly supported by CATAAlliance. Simply click the link below to download a PDF of the application form: https://williscollege.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/2018-WITS-application272756.pdf

As a first step, take a few minutes to review the rationale for Women in Tech Scholarships in Cyber Security and then see the how to Selection Process.

Why Now: Tearing down the barriers to Women in Cyber Security

Why are only 11% of Canadian cyber and network security professionals women? There’s absolutely no logical reason for it, and I can prove that. But before we get to that, let’s look back at how our society managed to reinforce rather than tear down the barriers that stood in the way of a woman’s ambition to join the building and traditional trades back in the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.

We were told then that a woman would never want to be a drywaller or that a woman couldn’t be a roofer or a plumber, or shouldn’t expect to last as an electrician or as a miner in Alberta or northern Ontario.  Posters were plastered across the walls of our high schools encouraging men to take on the building trades.  Men were depicted on television fixing homes and carrying out those roles which served to reinforce the societal perception. Today, according to the 2011 Statistics Canada Labour Survey, only 6% of all trade positions are held by women, a field that pays significantly more than the median income level in Canada.

Let’s park for a moment the notion that a woman might not want to lean towards a physical job, even if I vehemently disagree because I know many women who not only love the trades, but enjoy the salaries and benefits that come with them.  But if this is true, then why are there only slightly more women (11%) who make up the cyber and network security workforce in Canada? The physical argument doesn’t hold up.  Yet the reasons I hear all too often are eerily similar:  “A woman would never want to get into the cyber security industry.”

Google ‘cyber security’ or even the word ‘hacker’ and see what images pop up.  All men.  Are you telling me women are incapable of logical, problem solving thought?  It’s rubbish and just more of the same from the latter half of the last century.  We should and need to do something about it.

It’s time to identify the barriers facing women in technology. Together, let’s open the door for thousands of women from across Canada who aspire to a rewarding career in the cyber and IT sectors. With the job shortage facing the IT industry, I promise we are going to need them.

As a part of our Vision2020,  Willis College has announced the Women in Technology Scholarship (WITS) in Cybersecurity Education. This was undertaken to empower young women  and also to help recruit new talent into the rapid growing sector of cybersecurity.

Three Scholarships will be awarded to qualified recipients over a period of three years.  The Scholarship will be administered by the WITS Board of Trustees, who will meet annually in Ottawa to evaluate and award the candidates.

 A total of three (3) scholarships will be awarded annually over a three-year period (2018, 2019 and 2020) to qualified female students from across Canada who require financial assistance to enroll in Willis College’s Advanced Network Security Professional, Cybersecurity Analyst or Mobile Software Developer Diploma Programs.

Each Scholarship will be valued at approximately $25,000 and provides for tuition, books, industry certification, industry lab costs, as well as co-op for a one-year term starting in the Fall semester.

The Scholarship is non-transferable and may only be applied to academic career courses at Willis College.

The evaluation and award process will take place annually in Ottawa.  The Scholarship will be administered by the WITS Board of Trustees.

The Board of Trustees will be assessing candidates who have passed all required screening by Willis College. The candidates will demonstrate some or all of the following qualities (in no particular order):  proven intellectual and academic ability; personal integrity; interest in technology and cybersecurity; demonstrated leadership; and the need for financial assistance.

The successful candidates will be awarded with the Scholarship and a commemorative certificate at the WITS Scholarship Award Annual General Assembly which is held each August at Willis College Headquarters in Ottawa.

Selection Process

Basis of Selection

The Selection Committee is looking for candidates with proven intellectual and academic ability, integrity of character, interest in technology, respect for fellow human beings, ability to lead, demonstrated leadership and creativity in the areas of cyber security stewardship, appreciation for education, and initiative to use their talents to the fullest.

 Method of Selection

A Selection Committee consisting of representatives of WITS 2018-2019-2020 Board of Trustees will choose the successful candidates.  The decision of the Selection Committee is final.

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