What does a female engineer look like?
When this ad, put together by OneLogin in San Francisco, was posted in BART (San Fran’s metro), people began to question what an engineer is supposed to look like. Or, specifically, what a female engineer is supposed to look like.
People took to social media to comment on the middle photo of a Platform Engineer, Isis Wenger. Not realizing that Isis is an actual engineer, she received both positive and negative comments, some wondering “if women in particular buy this image of what a female software engineer looks like” or why the photo of Isis showed a “sexy smirk” and not a “warm, friendly smile”. Many seemed to think it was a campaign with a hired model trying to represent a female engineer, maybe to attract men to the company or to glamorize engineering to women. The reality? It was just a photo of a real, female engineer.
“The negative opinions about this ad that strangers feel so compelled to share illustrate solid examples of the sexism that plagues tech,” Isis Wenger “At the end of the day, this is just an ad campaign and it is targeted at engineers. This is not intended to be marketed towards any specific gender — segregated thoughts like that continue to perpetuate sexist thought-patterns in this industry.”
In response, Isis launched a hashtag, #iLookLikeAnEngineer to showcase the many faces behind tech. Check out some of the tweets below.
The woman’s story that should be read by anyone who thinks women can’t be engineers http://t.co/sZVsluCxEq pic.twitter.com/lF2HWiSIsR
— The Independent (@Independent) August 4, 2015
CS degree, 20+yrs full stack. Started w/ Pascal on an IBM PS/1. Prefer back-end dev & simulation #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/ibFx5r1ZUq — Kishau Rogers (@kishau) August 4, 2015
BS in Applied Mathematics, 9+ years full stack/mobile developer, cofounded a company #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/h5nCWqqeFC
— Raquel Hernandez (@maggit) August 4, 2015
#ILookLikeAnEngineer, despite often being mistaken for a marketer, designer, recruiter, or my fav—a girlfriend. pic.twitter.com/fNzhzSQCOr — glitter witch irl (@TessaHarmon) August 4, 2015
I’m an engineer @kickstarter; I’ve built software all over the world & grown & coached dev teams #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/OfrfKhpzLN
— Rebecca Sliter (@rebeccasliter) August 4, 2015
I’m from Benin, West Africa. I’m Black. I have short hair, and I smile a LOT. #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/3g0osIQxZ8 — Pamela Assogba (@pam_yam) August 4, 2015
#ILookLikeAnEngineer and I’m a mum & accidental #Minecraft fixer. I love my son, #SQL and #Data #SQLFamily #SQLPass pic.twitter.com/EfS4RKVjFT
— Jen Stirrup (@jenstirrup) August 4, 2015
I’m a mechanical engineer looking for a job! #ILookLikeAnEngineer skills do not include taking good selfies pic.twitter.com/UBHBFx7QgB — svbi shah (@kalehummus) August 4, 2015
At 30, started a tech career spanning programming, UX and product management – all self-taught. #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/ZQ0jKzmasQ
— Shannon Hale (@shannonsans) August 4, 2015
I love to code my own Minecraft mods. #ILookLikeAnEngineer and can’t wait to be one someday. #proudmama pic.twitter.com/NihshBXXMJ — Jodi Jahic (@jodij) August 4, 2015
I am a software developer, open source contributor, comics creator, and #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/RJC70df2BI
— Sarah Frisk (@SarahFrisk) August 4, 2015
I design, build, and test products, and teach others how to as well. You’re damn right #ILookLikeAnEngineer. pic.twitter.com/PLTm6mmy5n — amy eastment (@amyeastment) August 4, 2015
#ILookLikeAnEngineer &some folks even think I’m good at it. Even if I do hang kid pics & like my office to smell good pic.twitter.com/lKXenBUXsn
— Michelle Ufford (@sqlfool) August 4, 2015
I am a proud @CODE2040 Alum, @wogrammer, and pursued research to help my principle who had ALS #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/Gl4SThiryD — Kendell Byrd (@flylikeabyrd22) August 4, 2015
Loving and inspired by #ILookLikeAnEngineer, I am a MySQL DBA in @YelpEngineering pic.twitter.com/lRuh2l2dqR
— jcsuperstar (@jcsuperstar) August 4, 2015
Every day #ILookLikeAnEngineer because it’s what I do. pic.twitter.com/YMGQ80JcYV — Jen Keane (@zenbuffy) August 4, 2015
Developed an app that securely overwrites & deletes Android metadata. Now I’m a cyber engineer #ilooklikeanengineer pic.twitter.com/immzyEtfyD
— buttaluv. (@bunxgawd) August 4, 2015
My mom: database hacker, entrepreneur, purple mohawk sportin’ cancer survivor #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/rlLDqOe9IH — David Van Horn (@lambda_calculus) August 4, 2015
IT Engineer 8 years. Currently with @TwitterBoulder. New Hero: @isisAnchalee #iLookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/gwWHvn9cWC
— Nicole (@unorthodoxjane) August 4, 2015
Khuloud Al-Jamal, @KingsCollegeLon, researches nanomedicine. #ILookLikeAnEngineer http://t.co/4PyDuYYQyK @AmSciMag pic.twitter.com/st65mIQ5wI — Fenella Saunders (@fenellasaunders) August 4, 2015
My little sister, the rocket scientist/thermal/mechanical engineer #ILookLikeAnEngineer (s… http://t.co/41eZUUFOBx pic.twitter.com/cG7fIokblA
— Leah Bannon (@leahbannon) August 4, 2015
I’m a Spacecraft Structures Engineer for @AirbusDS – my current job is designing Mars Rovers… #ILookLikeAnEngineer pic.twitter.com/0hMHGuVK3I — Abbie Hutty (@a_hutty) August 4, 2015
#ILookLikeAnEngineer and @Padmasree is my role model! pic.twitter.com/GwIxxfHEnQ
— Raisa Mahomed (@RaisaMahomed) August 4, 2015
Feature image Via.