This past week was quite eventful for me with different things going on almost every night. Girls in Tech NY and the Clickable's Interesting Cafe featuring Heidi Dangelmaier are two events that left me great impressions.
At Girls in Tech event, I met some powerful women, not because they hold executive titles or anything of that matter. What make them powerful are the positive attitude and the drive to define themselves in a field that has "men only"written all over it. In this age when technology is constantly evolving, the image of a tech-savvy woman is no longer someone with thick glasses, who has no social life or does not care about the way she looks.
I ran into lady-webmasters and programmers who could talk for hours about how they built their websites and what type of codes they wrote just as much as they could talk about shoes and bags. I get excited when listening to people talking about technology and innovations. Even if my background is marketing, not technology and I could not tell how tech-savvy they were, it is still delightful talking to them. Their passion for tech will definitely lead them to where they wanted to be. Girls in Tech NY definitely has the ability to encourage women to reach above and beyond. I told Tommy Jenkins - member of GIT at the time, the spirit makes me feel empowered, and I am not even in tech :-)
I enjoyed the discussion at the Clickable's Interesting Cafe as well. Heidi, the discussion leader, shared her story: "After feeling like a social outcast as the only "chick" studying robotics at Princeton Computer Science Department, Heidi Dangelmaier became passionately interested in gender and design..." She raised the awareness of changes in female culture and how these changes have an impact on marketing, technology, culture and society. Heidi showed concerns that social networking might have too much influence in shaping how young generations viewed the world yet it did not emphasize on authenticity, thoughtfulness and the depth of human relationships. She gave a powerful example of how anyone could comment one someone else's business regardless of the relationship between the person who published a story and the person who commented on the story. It is not pleasant to receive a negative comment, and people can be really mean when it comes to expressing their thoughts and using their agenda.
As a true believer in the natural development of social networking, I agree that social networking can sometimes be a disaster. Nevertheless, it is no difference than anything else created by humans. Social networking will always have pros and cons just as good and bad people always coexist. Maybe it is better to focus on how social networking could help rather than what needs to be fixed, because really, is there anything that is perfect?
Heidi's presentation was full of creativity for product brandings. Her experience and knowledge of genders and designs really provided me with insights into different groups of people. She presented cutting edge ideas when it came to ad-targeting and branding, and I definitely benefited from the discussion. There were many professional opinions in the online industry as well and I have learned a lot. College is really not the end and there are still so much more to learn everyday, especially in this constant changing age of social networking.