By Wendy Kaufman (Correspondant, NPR) Editor's note: Listen to the story on NPR's Morning Edition here.
This week, thousands of women gathered in Portland, Ore., for the Grace Hopper Celebration, the world's largest technical conference for women and computing. High-tech companies are hiring, but there aren't nearly enough women to meet the demand.
It's no secret that beginning in middle school, young women often lose interest in math and science. So it's not surprising that relatively few women sign up for computer courses in college. When they do, they are often at a disadvantage. Indeed, nationwide only about 20% of the bachelor's degrees in computer science go to women.
Mark Bregman, the former chief technology officer at Symantec, says it's not nearly enough.
"One of the things that's a barrier to our ability to grow is our ability to hire the best talent," he says. "If we could get more women to go into computer science, we would have more talent to hire from."
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