We’re Out There

If you’ve never been to an ESRI User Conference, then you might be surprised by the size of it.

I was. (Okay okay, nothing like ComicCon, but still.)

It’s been years (okay, decades) since the last UC I attended, so I wasn’t quite prepared for the size of the San Diego Convention Center – nor the amount of people (an introvert’s nightmare). But I suffered through and came out, in the end, better for it.

Geogeeks Flex Their Muscles banner at the ESRI 2017 UC

I did not attend the UC alone!

WiGIS also attended ESRI’s 2017 UC. That is to say, I, along with Danielle Bram, Christina Boggs, Andrea Regalado, Olivia ,DeSimone Miriam Olivares, and many others among our volunteer ranks, attended one of the biggest congregations of GIS professionals on this side of the planet.

And there were a ton of other women at the conference! They were everywhere; listening to talks, presenting talks, demonstrating software, and just being the awesome mapsters we all are.

Special Interest Lunch Meeting

Attendance at the WiGIS lunch meeting at the ESRI 2017 UC

On Tuesday, over 110 Women in GIS gathered for a WiGIS lunch meeting where our fearless leaders talked about our efforts to form a non-profit. We also solicited ideas from the audience on how best we can serve our community of talented women. Some of the items presented were:

  • Create an online job center
  • Sponsor UC attendance for young women/students
  • Increase outreach to girls
  • Rant board on Facebook (it’s coming!)
  • Develop awards for diversity (for municipalities and/or companies)
  • Create a YouTube channel (what would you want to see?)
  • Translate the website to several languages
  • Find volunteer opportunities on women-specific issues

Our all-volunteer staff are working on implementing or, at the very least, exploring these suggestions. Thanks to all who attended and made it such an awesome meeting!

And special thanks to Andrea for providing the very popular WiGIS buttons handed out during the meeting. If you attended the meeting and missed out on the buttons, email outreach@womeningis.org to get one.

Social Gathering

A group of roughly 40 women gathered on Wednesday night at Indigo Hotel’s rooftop bar. While WiGIS couldn’t afford to buy anyone a drink, we mixed and mingled, hatched grand plans, swapped business cards, and had a good time in the lovely San Diego weather.

Thanks again to Andrea for arranging such a great venue. Let’s do it again soon!

Map Gallery

We also made our presence known in the map gallery. Andrea Regalado, Christina Boggs-Chavira, and myself submitted maps, each focused on our growing organization. Andrea focused on some stats from our Women in GIS Story Map. Christina’s map highlighted ways women can advocate for themselves. And my map was a compilation of last year’s identity survey.

It was also great to see Washington Women in GIS and Technology (WWGT) submit an informative and detailed map/poster on the gender wage gap in the state of Washington. If you don’t want to read the map image below, the information is also presented in Story Map format here.

WWGT’s map shows there’s still a need for women to speak out for equality. The wage gap *does* exist, and though there are more women working in the tech sector every day, we do not occupy the number of positions we should based on other work force statistics.

Super Women

Though we still have yet to reach full parity with men, we’ve come a long way. Together, with our male allies, we’ll find our super power.

Thanks for reading.

We love to hear from you! Did you attend the ESRI’s 2017 UC? If so, tell us about it in the comment section below. What’s your super power?

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