Girls' Day 2023: KPN calls on girls and boys to opt for IT and technology

All business sectors are experiencing a huge shortfall in technical personnel. That’s why, on Thursday March 30, KPN will be joining in with Girls’ Day to offer 300 schoolchildren a look behind the scenes. KPN will introduce them to the world of IT and technology: they will learn, for example, about ethical hacking, feeding cables to create an internet connection, changing WiFi passwords, and how the lighting can communicate with the internet.

Activities will be organized at several KPN locations to enable young people to dive into the technology, take a tour, learn what KPN has to offer, and speak to female KPN personnel. For the first time in the history of Girls’ Day a number of businesses, including KPN, will also welcome boys. The IT and technology sector is suffering a huge shortfall in technical personnel, and for that reason KPN wishes to use Girls’ Day to stir the enthusiasm of both girls and boys for working in this sector.

Marieke Snoep, Chief Business Market KPN and member of its Board of Management, is on hand in Amsterdam to see schoolchildren learn how light can communicate with the internet. She underscores the significance of Girls’ Day: "In the Netherlands generally, and certainly within KPN, we need a lot more people with a technical background. Generally, we need both men and women. However, we recognize that the under-representation of women in the technology sector finds its cause early on in education. I did a technical degree myself, and often I was the only woman in the lecture hall. I’ve always worked in telecom and IT, and I know the fun to be got from working in the technology sector. KPN believes in the importance of contributing to Girls’ Day, and introducing young people to a technical profession in a way they find appealing."

Girls continue to opt much less than boys for further education or jobs in science, technology, or IT. A total of 16% of people working in the digital and IT sector in the Netherlands are female, according to figures published by VHTO, Dutch expertise center for gender diversity in science, technology and IT. A few years back, KPN set itself clear goals in the field of diversity on the work floor. KPN is convinced of the importance of an even balance between men and women within teams, and is striving to see the representation of women within the business grow to at least 25% during 2024.

Girls' Day is an initiative of VHTO, Dutch expertise center for gender diversity in science, technology and IT, aimed at forming links between schools and businesses.