Etsy Funds Hacker School; Offers Grants for Women Engineers

written by HeidiIsern on April 10, 2012 in Industry Trends with no comments
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We were lucky enough to have Chad Dickerson, CEO of Etsy, judge at our last Under the Radar conference.  Now we are very pleased to see that Etsy is supporting women in technology by funding New York’s “Hacker School”. Etsy is offering ten $5,000 grants for women who apply to the program.

It could be said that Etsy is giving back to its community.  Almost all Etsy users are women; in fact 97% of respondents that replied to a recent survey were female. Sadly, its engineering team dynamic doesn’t match.  According to a recent Forbes article they only have 11 women engineers (out of almost 100) and none are managers.  It was time for them to do something about it.  After all, isn’t it better to have developers that are the target demographic? As advertising guru Leo Burnett said,If you can’t turn yourself into your customer, you probably shouldn’t be in the…business at all.”

With $50,000 in grants, Etsy plans to ‘hack down’ the gender divide and provide more incentive for women to code.  They are paving the way to have more women, and thus more balanced customer insight, in engineering departments everywhere.

To read the full Forbes article about Etsy Hackers, read here.