EL RENO — Haley Rader is having fun in the classroom.
Each week, she also benefits from professional tutelage in her chosen career field of information technology.
An adult student at Canadian Valley Technology Center, Rader, 22, of Yukon, participates in a mentorship program called Girl Tech.
The program’s mission is equipping students with skills to pursue careers in nontraditional areas such as information technology, science, research and engineering.
Program participants cultivate professional relationships with female mentors through online correspondence at least once each week.
“I’ve definitely had a lot of fun with it,” Rader said. “It’s a great program, especially for women who are enrolled in male-dominated programs.
“We have female mentors in the fields we have chosen. They give us good advice on how to get a good job.”
Girl Tech students also participate in job shadowing and soft skills activities.
Nontraditional programs are those for which individuals from one gender comprise less than 25 percent of the individuals employed in each such occupation or field of work.
Rader said she is leaning toward a career in computers. She is enrolled in Computer Information Systems at Canadian Valley’s El Reno Campus.
Canadian Valley is one of several metro-area participating technology centers. Francis Tuttle, Metro Tech and Gordon Cooper technology centers also have Girl Tech programs.
Bill Kramer is communications and marketing coordinator for Canadian Valley Technology Center.