Women in Technology Project

General Information

Goals and objectives
  • Provide validation, advice, and support for girls interested in math, science, and/or technology
  • Inspire middle school girls to consider career choices in fields where women are currently underrepresented
  • Help girls make informed, active educational choices
  • Address the isolation girls experience as they mature
  • Give girls opportunities to discuss school and personal issues, while helping them develop strategies for dealing with difficult subject matter and situations
  • Increase girls' confidence in abilities
  • Help give girls a sense of voice and empowerment in classroom
  • Use telementoring as a forum for girls to share their thoughts and fears
  • Help give girls a sense of respect and care for community
  • Create a friendship that fosters individual and social responsibility
  • Create a stable and well-respected telementoring program for future middle school girls

Purpose of telementoring
Telementoring uses e-mail to bring middle school girls together with professional women who are working in technical and science fields. This medium allows each student to correspond quickly and informally with a woman who can give advice, tell stories, share hopes and dreams, and provide the particular kind of personal guidance that can be so helpful to a student as she navigates her way through the many choices she faces every day. A student can hear firsthand about the paths that the mentor took in her education and career, and can form a one-on-one relationship with a woman who may share other interests. Students benefit from personal attention from an adult who can say, "I understand your situation, I went through some of the same things myself." For a girl who is interested in science, math or technology, it can be particularly helpful to hear words of encouragement from a woman in one of these fields who may have faced some of the same hurdles she is facing now. And regardless of the particular interests of the participants, just having somebody outside of the everyday environment to bounce thoughts and ideas off of can be extremely useful and comforting.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • Is all correspondence confidential?
    Yes. All correspondence is confidential provided there are no safety issues. If a problem of safety to the mentor or student arises, please contact the Project Coordinator.
  • What if I experience a problem?
    Any problems, feelings of discomfort, ethical or legal concerns, or questions must be reported to Amy Ferris, the Project Coordinator at ferris@quest-net.com or by calling 802-728-0040, or to Cary Brown, Director of the Women in Technology Project at cbrown3@vtc.vsc.edu or by calling 802-728-1510.
  • Am I going to meet the person I was matched with?
    Person to person visits are not authorized through this program. If you wish to meet with your mentor or student during the project or after the project is over, the mentor and student's parents will be held solely responsible and liable for the visit.
  • Will the mentors and students exchange phone numbers and addresses?
    No. Mentors and students will have contact only over email. No phone numbers or addresses are to be exchanged. Also, no gifts or money are to be exchanged.
  • What do the students call the mentors?
    This issue must be addressed at the beginning of your relationship. While the mentor may ask the student to call her something more formal, we are trying to create informal, comfortable dialogue in a friendly manner, so first names are preferred.

Return to Telementoring home page