GuyanaInformation and Communication TechnologyNews

Guyana observes Int’l Day of Girls in ICT

International Day of Girls in ICT is observed to help inspire girls to consider a future in technology.
Guyana’s observance of Girls in ICT Day 2013 was centred around a symposium and mini job fair which was hosted at the Guyana International Conference Centre on Thursday.
Over 300 female secondary school students were in attendance at the event to listen to mostly female ICT professionals speak about their experiences and expectations working in the ICT sector.
They will also speak about the many and growing prospects in the ICT sector. The students had the opportunity to have interactive sessions with the presenters. Several private sector companies were also onboard and showcased their ICT products and services and spoke about job opportunities at their agencies.
In addition to the above, a Facebook page is expected to be launched to keep females engaged in the process throughout the year. It is also expected to provide links for training, feature female ICT professionals and provide valuable information about child online safety and cyber security, among other things.
Girls in ICT Day is an initiative launched by members of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) at its 2010 plenipotentiary conference, with the idea of creating a global environment that will empower and encourage girls and young women to consider careers in the field of information and communication technologies (ICTs).
This action was necessary since it was observed that employment in the ICT sector, worldwide, was and still is dominated by males. This, most likely is why the theme for 2013 is “Expanding boundaries, changing attitudes”.
The government of Guyana through initiatives such as the e-governance, the One Laptop Per Family and Computer Laboratories for Schools projects, as well as the private sector, are making significant investments in ICTs, thereby building the foundation upon which female citizens can expand their boundaries.
It is important that both males and females recognise that their involvement in the ICT sector is not meant for males only. By choosing careers in the ICT sector, females would also be embarking on rewarding careers, as this sector has been rapidly expanding over the years and will continue to do so into the foreseeable future.
As an ICT professional, one is not necessarily limited to an office or cubicle at the workplace, or even working for a locally-based office.
Broadband communications and the Internet are making it easier for professionals to work from home and for overseas-based clients as well.
A career in the ICT sector does not necessarily have to be in the science and technology disciplines, it could be in the areas of law, marketing, administration and finance.
Notwithstanding this, there is need for more students to take science and technology subjects at school, as it has been expressed by experts that there is a linkage between science and technology practitioners and a country’s development.
According to the Education Ministry’s 2008-2013 Strategic Plan, the number of students who write science and technology subjects at school is very small.
This is a global problem. In fact, the ITU has honed in on this reality and has recognised that girls traditionally do not choose the sciences and technology disciplines at school. As a result of this, they have launched a campaign called “Tech needs Girls”. Accordingly, there is need to also promote the “Tech needs Girls” message along with the Girls in ICT campaign.

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