In recent years, the tech world has increasingly been dominated by men. A global research by Women In Tech: The facts, indicated that women hold only 25% of all computing occupations worldwide. The first programmer was a woman named Ada Lovelace, who in 1840, wrote the world’s first machine algorithm for an early machine.
These days, women make up small percentage of computer science graduates and the workforce as well which is very discouraging.
For this reason, a second year student currently studying BSc Administration at the University of Ghana, Legon and a Co-founder of Creative App Solution, came up with the initiative dubbed Young Women In Programming (YWIP). This initiative seeks to empower young ladies to solve problems in our society, especially tertiary students who have the passion and attitude to be more conversant with technology by taking them through the basics and training them to acquire skills in coding, software development, among others, to develop mobile applications and also software to solve critical problems of society and help them expand and grow their businesses.
YWIP was launched on 25th September, 2017 at the University of Professional Studies (UPSA) with over 200 attendees and important women that matter in the tech industry such as Farida Bedwei (Co-founder and CTO of Logiciel Ghana Ltd), Enyonam Kumahor (Managing Partner of the Cobalt Partners), Dr. Kajsa Hallberg Adu (Lecturer at Ashesi University and Co-founder of Blogging Ghana), Victoria Lakshimi Hamah (Chief Executive Officer of Progressive Organisation for Women’s Advancement) and Jemila Abdulai (Writer, Digital Strategist and Policy Consultant in Ghana). These speakers addressed the misconception of women as late adopters to technology, empowering young women to innovate using technology and leveraging on programming to solve complex problems in our society.
Since the launch, YWIP has trained 70 women to either create mobile applications and websites and is aiming to facilitate, encourage and enable a significant increase in the participation of young women in higher education to develop professional skills in computer programming to help solve analytical problems in the society and also breach the global gender disparity gap and discrimination in the world of tech.
Applications would soon be available for all females to take advantage of this great opportunity. These female students would have access to a training course material which they would have to study on their own to prepare them for an examination. After the examination the successful students would then be taken through a six month training program where they would learn and apply new trends in software development. This includes training on the in-demand programming languages. During this period they would be paid a monthly allowance to cater for transportation and feeding during the training program. After the training program they would be matched with software development firms globally and locally.
Roxanne Mawunyo Akorley.
Twitter: @AkorleyRoxanne / @young_wip