In commemoration of the 2019 International Day of Women and Girls in Science themed ‘Investment in Women in Science for Inclusive Green Growth’, Oando PLC led by a delegation of its female engineers mentored female pupils in one of the Oando Foundation adopted primary schools, Arch Bishop Taylor Primary School, Victoria Island, on the role and importance of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in the world, why they are passionate about STEM and proud to have built successful careers in it. The aim of the programme was to provide a platform for the female engineers to engage female pupils towards considering and embracing STEM subjects for a future career in STEM by sharing real life and relatable stories that would inspire the young girls.
In order to achieve full and equal access to, and participation in science for women and girls, and to further achieve gender equality and female empowerment, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution declaring 11 February of every year as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. According to the United Nations (UN) “a significant gender gap has persisted throughout the years at all levels of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines all over the world. Even though women have made tremendous progress towards increasing their participation in higher education, they are still under represented in these fields.”
Globally, less than 30% of researchers worldwide are women. According to UNESCO data (2014 – 2016), only around 30% of all female students select STEM-related fields in higher education. Worldwide, female students’ enrolment is particularly low in ICT (3%), natural science, mathematics and statistics (5%t) and in engineering, manufacturing and construction (8%).