Amdaris Group Accountant Sarah Smyth recently visited Bristol’s King’s Oak Academy to speak to Year 9 girls about her experience working for an international software company.
Sarah appeared at the invitation of Rav Bumbra, an entrepreneur and diversity champion who works closely with students from King’s Oak and several other schools.
Rav is the founder of Cajigo, a mobile learning platform which provides women with mentorship and support for successful tech and leadership careers. Amdaris recently agreed to sponsor Cajigo, which has also received support from techUK, King’s College London, and the Marylebone Cricket Club.
After a presentation about Amdaris, and her experience working in the tech sector, Sarah took questions from the attendance. The roughly twenty students in attendance are in the process of choosing their GCSE subjects, and were keen to get advice from Sarah.
“Several girls asked me how I choose my career, and if I knew what I wanted to be at their age,” Sarah explained. “The truth is, I did not know. Initially I wanted to work for an airline as a flight attendant.
“What I learned later is I really love being an accountant. I encouraged the girls to explore lots of career options, especially in the tech sector, and to be sure to give themselves the opportunity to pursue them.
“I’m a big believer in the maxim, ‘If you do what’s easy, your life will be hard. If you do what’s hard your life will be easy.’ The harder they work now, the more options they will have in years to come.”
Sarah also made it clear that not everyone has to be a software engineer to find a rewarding career in the tech industry.
“Tech companies are a growing part of the economy and girls especially need to be encouraged to consider careers in the sector,” she said. “There is a shortage of software developers all around the world, but tech companies also need skilled professionals in a huge range of jobs. I’m living proof of that!”
The Kingswood Oak students were delighted to get the chance to hear from Sarah, and Rav is enthusiastic about Amdaris’ decision to support her work encouraging women to consider careers in STEM.
“I’m delighted to have Amdaris to join our mission, and support our Cajigo Schools Programme for educating girls about the careers that are shaping our world, and empowering them to believe they have potential to reach the highest levels in the tech sector.
“In order to increase the representation of women working in technology careers, it’s imperative that businesses explore new ways of engaging female talent, now and in the future. Collaboration between businesses and education provides an opportunity to create greater impact, working together to close the STEM gender gap in schools.”