PJ Emam, chief executive officer of the Montreal-based technology firm, believes diversity is the key to success, yet says there is a shortage of women candidates applying for software engineering and similar jobs. Through two new scholarships at Concordia, Emam aims to encourage more talented women to join the tech sector.
“As companies try to diversify, we notice more women in business development and project management, yet very few in more complex IT roles, such as coding,” says Emam. Women account for just over five percent of coders, according to 2021 data from Statista.
The new gift will fund annual Quadbridge Scholarships for Women in Tech, valued at $7,500 each. The scholarships will be awarded to two female undergraduate students — one entering business technology management at the John Molson School of Business and the other, software engineering or computer science at the Gina Cody School of Engineering and Computer Science.
“This new support from Quadbridge will not only benefit our students but also advances our efforts towards greater equity, diversity and inclusion,” says John Molson dean Anne-Marie Croteau, who is both the first woman dean at John Molson, and the first woman to earn a PhD in information systems from Université Laval in Quebec City.
“We express our gratitude to Quadbridge for their generous donation, which will enable us to attract more female students to our excellent academic programs and thereby enhance the diversity of our student population,” says Mourad Debbabi, dean of the Gina Cody School.