Afro-Tech Girls, a non-profit organisation focused on encouraging and empowering females in the areas of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), recently hosted a conference in partnership with IHS Nigeria to commemorate the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, themed “Women Scientists At the Forefront of the Fight Against COVID-19.”
The conference, sponsored by IHS Nigeria, a subsidiary of IHS Towers, hosted female speakers from the medical, science and technology sectors to an interactive session with over 100 participants in attendance online and a further 100 girls from public secondary schools watching from their classrooms.
The event was also used as a soft launch of a longer-term partnership between Afro-Tech Girls and IHS Nigeria.
The theme of the event reinforced present challenges associated with the coronavirus pandemic and highlighted how women in science were playing a critical role to address these challenges.
At the launch of the virtual event, Afro-Tech Girls co-founder, Adeola Shasanya, said, “We are grateful for organisations like IHS Nigeria that have committed to improve STEM outcomes in Nigeria, particularly within young females.
“We are confident that their support will go a long way to ensure these females are equipped with the skills required to compete and contribute immensely in STEM-related careers.”
Speakers at the commemorative event included Dr. Ngozi Onyia, MD, Paelon Memorial Hospital; and Ms. Cima Sholotan, director of sustainability and corporate communications, IHS Nigeria.
There were also Ms. Yetunde Adewunmi, PhD, microbiologist, Wadsworth Center, New York State Department of Health; Dr. Mobola Oyefule, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota; Dr. Kemi Ezenwanne, Armoured Shield Medical Centre; Ms. Jessica Uwoghiren, data analytics expert; and Ms. Gloria Okereke, team lead, network operating centre, IHS Nigeria.
In addition, the event addressed critical issues facing young females looking to build careers in STEM, in the hope that confidence and soft skills would be improved to drive more interest and participation among young females.