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Business News of Friday, 12 November 2021


US trains 300 Nigerian school girls on coding

US Consul Claire Pierangelo US Consul Claire Pierangelo

The United States consulate general has launched a new project to empower 300 secondary school girls in Osun to pursue education and careers in STEM fields through the project tagged ‘Osun Girls Can Code’.

The 300 schoolgirls would receive training on coding, web design, and product creation, “all key skills needed in today’s increasingly competitive job market,” said the US government.

It explained in a statement issued yesterday that encouraging the role of girls and women in STEM fields, “has been the cornerstone” of the technology-learning programmes supported by the US embassy in Nigeria.

According to the statement, in addition to the capacity building programme for the 300 students, 60 female STEM teachers from Osun would receive training to help teach more effectively and on how to mentor women and girls about careers in tech fields.

During the project’s inauguration in Osogbo, US Consul General Claire Pierangelo noted that the six-month capacity building program would foster a supportive community where the young girls can receive mentorship, network, and share internship opportunities in STEM fields.

Pierangelo explained that the, ‘Osun Girls Can Code programme was one of the many initiatives of the US embassy that “seeks to ensure gender parity and provide women and girls” with opportunities to contribute to creating sustainable and inclusive economic prosperity for Nigeria.

“The United States promotes the rights and empowerment of women and girls in our foreign policy, and we have invested millions of dollars to advance gender equality across sub-Saharan Africa,” Pierangelo said.

“When barriers to the participation of women and girls in STEM fields are removed, we all benefit. Whether at home or abroad, promoting women in the STEM fields is a US government priority.”

The project will end with a pitch competition to showcase the participants’ achievements, with US consulate representatives taking part on the panel and the winning schools receiving prizes. A 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow, Dayo Adeniyi, is implementing the project with a public diplomacy grant from the US consulate general.

The US government has introduced several programmes to create opportunities for women in the tech field.

In 2011, the US government introduced the TechWomen programme to empower the next generation of women leaders in the technology field.