Perhaps you’ve heard of the TUNE House, or maybe this is a brand new concept — either way, we’re excited to share where the program is now as we enter year three and launch the newest part of the program, the TUNE House Roadshow.
Three years ago our founders, Lucas and Lee Brown, shared the idea of creating the TUNE House, a scholarship that provides free housing, professional mentors, and additional resources for eight residents. The program supports female undergraduate students at the University of Washington who are pursuing degrees in computer science, engineering or information technology and who demonstrate a passion for technology and are likely to pursue a career in software development.
As we open TUNE House applications for the third year, we have made a conscious effort to continue our involvement with internal and external communities over the years, such as our TUNE mentorship program, tech workshops, networking events, networking participation with Techstars, and volunteering for Teen Feed and Earth Corps.
TUNE House partners with IGNITE Worldwide
This year we wanted to find a new opportunity for residents to give back to their communities. Problem solved. Meet IGNITE Worldwide, an incredible organization founded in 1999, whose mission is to inspire girls to become future technology leaders and innovators of our world by introducing school girls from grades 6-12 to technology careers through panel discussions, job shadowing, technology workshops, mentoring, and field trips throughout the school year. The students visit the workplaces of professional women in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers.
TUNE has partnered with IGNITE Worldwide over the last two years by hosting office visits and visiting schools around the Seattle area, but we wanted to find another way to connect with young female students. In addition to donating all proceeds from Postback, our annual conference to IGNITE this year, we’re teaming up with IGNITE this Spring to launch the TUNE House Roadshow. Together, the TUNE House residents and a number of our TUNE female engineers plan to visit middle and high schools around the Seattle area that have an existing partnership with IGNITE or a computer science program.
Similar to the IGNITE Worldwide program, TUNE House residents and female TUNE engineers will share their personal stories of what led them to pursue a technical degree, educational choices that helped them get where they are, mentors and influencers along the way, overall benefits of being in a technical career, as well as the challenges of being a female entering the tech industry. We thought it would not only be exciting for young students to talk with college students who are in the middle of pursuing technical careers, but also inspiring.
The roadshow visits are strategically scheduled close to the school’s class registration dates, that way the residents and engineers can build up excitement and encourage the high school students to enroll in a technology class the following semester. Our goal is that all the female students we meet will enroll in a technology class and uncover new passions. We do not expect that every single student will choose a technology route, but we want to encourage them to try something new, while also increasing and maintaining the number of female students within these classes.
Once class registration closes, the TUNE House Roadshow team will follow up with the schools and gather the number of females who enrolled in a technology class. Additionally, we will stay in contact with the schools and find out how many females signed up for technology classes the following semester. Perhaps the students love the tech classes, maybe they realize it’s not for them, but it’s important that they were given the opportunity to try them out.
TUNE, along with a number of other companies in the Seattle area, is placing efforts toward moving the needle. We believe women should not be a minority in the tech industry. By launching the TUNE House Roadshow, we are excited to continue creating spaces for women who are passionate about technology and innovation to connect, collaborate and flourish, in our efforts to bridge the gender gap.
- Interested in learning more about the TUNE House program or having the TUNE House Roadshow visit your school? Email TUNEhouse@tune.com.
- More information about IGNITE Worldwide.
- Interested in becoming a TUNE House resident? Applications are open until April 1, 2017.
Ali is the recruiting program specialist for TUNE. She received her bachelors degree in communication from the University of Washington, and loves exploring new neighborhoods by foot, searching for the next best coffee shop and spending time with friends.