GIRLS AND CAREERS

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GIRLS AND CAREERS

  • gcadmin
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    The slow rate at which the girl child embraces careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), especially in Africa, is quite alarming. “The participation of girls and women in Science and Technology education has been and is still low around the world especially Africa” (According to Kishore, 2008; McCarthy, 2003; Ellis; 2003 and Schwedes, 1996). Urgent attention and adequate mentoring measures by STEM-enthused professionals have to strengthen on that aspect to sustain their motivation. It is worrisome how parents are major contributors in discouraging their female children from embracing a STEM-related career without minding the potential endowed in them to make impact in the world.

    Traditionally, the mindset of African parents towards the education of the girl child is very primitive. In the sense that they believe that quality education should not be equitably standardized among the male and female counterparts. This has made the female counterparts victims of different traditional and cultural practices: they suffer degradation, they are objects of neediness, their countenances are just to be seen while their voices must not be heard, they are viewed as being sub-servient to their male partners; they are the mediocre set, their place is in the kitchen. (Ahmad and Najeemah, 2013) Most African parents, today, still see the career end point of the female child to be confined to the home and in the kitchen. They believe that innovation and creativity is meant for the male counterpart. An investigation by the U.S National Research Council discovered “a greater number of women than men are procuring doctorate degrees— yet the female counterpart included 36% of assistant professors and just 27% of residency applicants”.

    An icon to be reckoned with is the Late (Dr) Mrs Dora Okuyili, a renowned Nigerian pharmacist and pharmacologist who contributed immensely to the field of science and technology and then later became the Information Minister from 2008 to 2010. Finding her career pathway in the field of science and technology made her unleash other latent potentials in her life of becoming a visionary leader and helping her nation to fight against fake and illicit drugs manufacturing and she also contributed to Nigeria’s rebranding project.

    Another force to be reckoned with is Dr Mae Jamison. She was conceived in Alabama on the 17th of October 1956 and brought up in Chicago. Growing up, her parents influenced her to spend numerous hours in the library studying about the sciences, which sparked her energy and passion for STEM. The history — Mae went to Stanford University, where she earned a degree in chemical engineering and later went ahead to acquire a medical degree. She has practiced as a physician and researcher with the Peace Corps in Liberia and Sierra Leone and later came back to the United States where she chose to apply to the National Aeronautic Space Administration (NASA) for its astronaut training program. In 1992, she became the principal African American woman to ever travel to space with the undertaking mission.

    Girls education contributes positively to national development and helps to accomplish national transformation. The deprivation of quality formal education in STEM to girls in a society could result to an unsalvageable, uncountable misfortune in many parts of the economy. This incredible misfortune influences Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) and other workforces around the world. In this way, it is most important that girls obtain quality training with a specific end goal to enormously contribute towards the growth and development of the entire country.

    Mentoring the girl-child to embrace a STEM-related career should start from their tender age. Once their passion toward STEM is noticeable, all they need at that moment is proper and continuous mentoring to fulfil their potentials. Just as the famous saying goes “what a male can do a female can do even much better”. The female folks are not exempted from maximizing their potentials if they are mentored towards a chosen STEM career.

    Data science seems to be the new technology replacing oil. Artificial intelligence is being augmented as a key driver to enable autonomous systems. The Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) discipline has been a pivot for most modern businesses to wheel on.

    The chart above shows the impact of financial technology (FinTech) in businesses, science, engineering, media, law, IT and others.

    • This topic was modified 3 months ago by gcadmin.
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