An interview with technical writer Mikayle Candice by Michelle Lowery, President of Women in Technology, VEDC-WBC Committee.
As a woman in tech, I have seen and heard almost all of the reasons why women have fallen behind men in the technical industry. And believe me when I tell you, those reasons don’t add up to a quarter cup of plastic beans!
When I think about women in technology, my thoughts are technology becoming more useful in making the world a better place, in ameliorating people’s lives, and providing answers to science, mathematics, engineering, and technological questions that have remained unanswered for a long period of time. Through women, technology will grow to develop a second brain.
Technology mirrors us. It seeks to evolve our consciousness and through that, the ability not only to communicate, but to be relatable. Who better to develop technology that relates to people and the planet than women? Our main goal at the WBC-Women in Technology program is to track, follow, learn, and collaborate with our female leaders in technology, as well as to grant our community and clients with the resources to gain economic power.
Discussing Women in Technology with Mikayle Candice
For us to excel at bringing women in technology together and boosting their economic power, we have to start by acknowledging our leading women and at the same time those who support them and our cause. This month we talked to and honored Mikayle Candice, a former communications assistant to the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the University of California San Diego.
Mikayle, what made you interested in writing for an Engineering department?
I love writing and engineering. So, I sought out a way to do them both.
What are the toughest lessons you have had to learn as a woman in technology?
To stop doubting myself and constantly asking myself questions, such as, “Do these men want me here? Am I qualified to be here? Is my work valued or just getting in the way?”
As we know you are a proficient tech writer. What do you do to ensure quality in your writing?
I take time with my writing and treat it like art. I’m very passionate about my work so I always want my finalized pieces to reflect that. Making sure that I double check my sources is of great importance too.
If anything, what do you wish you would have done differently when first approaching this kind of career?
Trusted myself more. Allowed myself to understand that mistakes are only learning curves and to love them because each mistake made me better and more valuable in my career.
Judging on a scale of 1 to 10, how would you rate working with men in the Engineering Department?
What do you think the future of technology will grant to young girls who aspire to be apart of STEM?
The future will be bright because of all the people who are out here paving the way for them to have easier access to opportunities.
What changes would you like to see happen in tech?
I would like there to be more diversity. I feel that if we really want to solve issues or problems in the world we need to put our best foot forward and that means making space for everyone at the tech table. Diversity brings more knowledge and ideas from people who think differently than you and that’s powerful.
What problems around us do you want to see technology solve?
I think healthcare keeps getting better with technology, so let’s keep getting creative and solve more health issues.
Can you tell us why you think women have a serious place in the future of tech?
The more technology progresses, the more it needs to relate to everyone, and women are perfect for this.
How do you think men can be a support system for women in STEM?
Just be fair. I think if we treat women with equal respect and encourage them to be a part of the conversation it goes a long way…at least for me it did.
And finally, I think everyone needs one way or the other to be assisted. What kind of support system do you believe you need to continue to be successful in your career and to gain economic power?
A mentor is always helpful to have and so is networking. When I engage with others I get to learn from them and challenge myself more to do better. Making connections with people is very powerful and meaningful.
To learn more about women in technology and meet other women working in the field, join our free event on February 25th.
Mikayle Candice studies communication at the University of California San Diego and worked for the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department with Jamie Gonzalez, her Operations Manager, who has given her great opportunities to be a leading voice in the field of engineering. Jamie Gonzalez encourages and supports her team to be innovative and forward thinkers in their personal and professional lives.
The future is really ours to design, it only takes our willingness to solve the problems that have arisen, by taking bold and progressive steps in finding solutions.
Michelle Lowery is an entrepreneur, business consultant, business educator, business writer, and President of Women in Technology VEDC-WBC.