WITIN marks ‘International Girls in ICT’, harps on career in STEM
WOMEN in Technology in Nigeria (WITIN) last week, marked the ‘International Girls in Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Day’ with a call on the girl child to take up careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) so they can brighten their future, as well as that of Nigeria.
This call came from the Founder and President of WITIN, Mrs. Martha Omoekpen-Alade at the career fair organised to mark the occasion. The event brought together over a hundred girls from several secondary schools in Lagos state.
She lamented the digital divide between the male child and the girl child. She tried to awaken the consciousness of the students present at the event, who were mostly girls from select secondary schools across Lagos state to arise, take up career in ICT and STEM and show to the whole world that they were equally as endowed as any male child.
In addition, Alade spoke on the prospects of careers in ICT for girls in Nigeria. She stressed the need to have more girls in STEM as there is huge gender parity in most tech companies.
“Research has shown that companies with a more balanced workforce with women on board do better. This diversity can only be attained if girls begin to consider careers in ICT. Early interventions will enable girls understand that limitless opportunities abound for them if they leverage on careers in ICT”.
She opined that women who decide to take up career in ICT, either decides to take up full time employment or work from home, yet make as much money as any other person in full time employment.
According to her, the reason why girls have that phobia for ICT, is because they think that it is a profession that is meant for only the boys. Alade advised the girls to dis countenance that idea as it was not true.
She said that there was nothing that the boys can do in ICT that the girls cannot. The WITIN founder believes that the girls can do more with ICT than the boys because God has given them the gift to multi-task better than the boys. She believes that if they can leverage on this they will become great IT entrepreneurs of the future. Since 2012, WITIN has celebrated the girls in ICT Day yearly.
In a video conference, Head, Special Initiatives Division of International Telecommunication Union in Geneva Switzerland, Susan Schorr, congratulated the girls for being a part of the global movement that is taking place simultaneously across the world.
According to her, there were 3,500 events holding simultaneously with over 130,000 girls participating. She advised the girls to pursue a profession in ICT as it was a good profession with limitless opportunities that can give them a secured future.
Laura Kangas, a programme officer with ITU on special initiatives also spoke to the girls from Geneva, sharing with them exciting events taking place on Girls in ICT Day in different parts of the world.
The International Girls in ICT Day is an initiative backed by all ITU member states in ITU Plenipotentiary Resolution 70 (Rev. Busan, 2014). It aims to create a global environment that empowers and encourages girls and young women to consider careers in the growing field of ICT.