Exciting Start to #WomeninTechWeek2018 : Digital Day

The first day of Women in Tech Week was exciting . Some highlights from Ghana(Kumasi), Zambia, Kenya, Uganda, Sierra Leone, Germany and Mauritius

Kenya

We were honoured to have a tweet chat with Salome Gathoni on Digital Africa and the way forward for Africa. She shared insightful tips on areas governments are to focus

on to get Africa where it ought to be in terms of technology. Salome also shared tips on how to cope as a female in a male-dominated field such as technology. Check our twitter page for the full conversation.

Mauritius, Zambia, Ghana, Sierra Leone, Uganda and Nigeria saw the launch of Women in Tech Week 2018 as they celebrated Digital Africa Day.

In our #Uganda #womenintechweek . our Speaker Astrid Haas spoke on Economics of Mobile Money . But more importantly like a boss she had a baby on her hip and technical knowledge on her lips . We salute her #womenintech #leadership #technology #motherhood

A Woman’s Worth – DigitalAgeConversations

       A Woman’s Worth – DigitalAgeConversations by Edith Utete ( Zimbabwe Chapter Lead WITA)

ventures

 

Please also pay special attention to women. Women care for the other people much more than men. Men care for themselves. Women are going to be very powerful in the 21st century because last century people compared muscle; this century people compare wisdom. Hire as many women as possible – this is what we did and this is the secret sauce.”

  • Jack Ma on one of Alibaba’s successes

 

Lately, if you are like me (fixated with all things tech) you will find that there has been a lot of talk about the role and participation of women in the tech space, at tech conferences – in the audience and on the panels, in the workplace and at school and in all things STEM related. You would have also probably heard responses to calls for equal opportunities for women being met with responses like, “What’s stopping them?”, “Who’s stopping them?” and “There is a discrepancy?” While I have a lot of personal and intense opinions about the matter and such responses, I will start by being as level headed as I can be, under the circumstances, and do what I consider to be the most rational thing, which is to share some interesting information that I have come across.

 

Contrary to the comments that there is no discrepancy in terms of gender balances in tech, research continues to show that there is apparent lack of gender diversity. In the US women hold 25 per cent of jobs in tech and only 14 per cent are in architecture and engineering roles while the ratio is even smaller in leadership positions and innovative roles. The percentage of women in Computing occupations has significantly declined since 1991. Some of the reasons for the exodus of women in tech according to a 2016 survey, included nature of the workplace as a central factor, poor prospects of development and advancement, inadequate support, exclusion from innovative roles, unequal pay and benefits (or distorted benefits in favour of male counterparts or subordinates – true story, I had this experience once upon a time) and lack of flexibility to help them balance work and personal responsibilities.

 

Why does diversity matter? Besides the clear example given of a successful company, Alibaba, in my prelude, research has shown that balanced teams are more innovative and efficient. There is improved and diverse creativity, problem-solving and productivity and companies are provided with larger talent pools. Another bonus of having a diverse gender balance is that companies are able to attract and retain female clients by providing solutions to female pain points.

 

Now! Now that we have got that out of the way and just in case we still have someone asking the questions that gave me an itch in unreachable places I will now turn to another matter…. that of the girls or women who ARE actually in the tech space in one way or the other. I have had the opportunity and privilege of meeting and inquiring about the whys, whens and hows with quite a number of these amazing and brilliant women but some issues that they brought up made me realise why so many younger women and girls would be discouraged or afraid of entering the tech industry.

 

For starters in my world, and I have picked up that this is the case in most parts of the world, being techie (or a tech geek/genius) requires you to be super intelligent and unfortunately  most girls do not feel or are made to believe that they do not fit that description. We have been boxing potential and ability based on gender so much that STEM subjects are generally perceived and accepted to be the male only domain. So! When, in those rare moments, a girl ventures into the unknown territory of super intelligent beings the first instinct is to become one of the boys.  Why? So that she can be accepted, respected and in order to squarely fit in. Suddenly, a woman feels or is made to feel that she has to lose her “femininity”. I can definitely relate to this having been in male dominated environments in many seasons of my life – from growing up in a pre-dominantly male environment, to having very strongly influential men in the form of father, uncles, brothers, friends and peers that I adored and looked up to, to working in male dominated industries where women were usually very few at the boardroom table or in management positions. I remember putting away my makeup, precious heels, brightly coloured clothes and sweet smelling perfume all in a bid to fit in and to be taken seriously. This was after MANY reminders from friends, family and colleagues that I had to tone it down otherwise I would never be taken seriously, valued or considered the formidable team player that I believed myself to be. Sadly, this shift neither made me liked, respected nor valued to the extent that I envisaged and to many I remained the young girl who thinks too highly of herself.

 

I have also heard how being a “cool girl” in the tech world requires that you be able to keep up with the team (aka the boys). One interesting observation that I picked up from Sarah Stockdale in “The myth of the ‘cool tech girl’ And why she’s dangerous”, is that, “The cool girl in tech plays ping pong, drinks beer at work, is “one of the guys”, participates in inappropriate slack .gif threads, says things like “she’s overreacting”, “I don’t consider myself a feminist, I just work hard”, “I’ve never experienced discrimination at work”. The cool girl doesn’t call out sexist remarks, she laughs at your “jokes”, she defends you to other women, and helps silence them. The cool girl is ‘one of the boys’.”

 

Unfortunately, as Sarah points out, the “cool tech girl” is a myth and a mere coping mechanism, not a real person. She is the product of environments which do not feel safe for women, which force women “to cope by reflecting the patriarchal norms that oppress them – like a warped funhouse mirror.” It has been said that, “If you don’t feel safe to be yourself, you’ll find someone safe to be.” When I have used this phrase some have responded by saying, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do” or “If you cannot stand the heat get out of the kitchen.” So sadly, most sisters are faced with only two options, to fit in or to head out! And the sadder consequence of their actions is that future female contributors to this amazing industry end up feeling intimidated and opt to keep out of the “kitchen” from the onset.

 

I have countless examples that make women feel unsafe in the tech space – from the Uber board member who made sexist comments about women on boards to the local cases that I have encountered in the practice of the law and as a female STEM mentor, of sexual harassment and inappropriate remarks on social media or in the workplace. Fortunately, instead of merely whining about these issues, I have also managed to pick up some possible solutions to them:

 

  1. Mentoring of young (and even older) women in tech

 

The call that has often been made in most cases have been for more female mentors to avail themselves to younger women by sharing experiences (successes and failures, wins and errors), BEING VISIBLE (so that other women and girls can SEE that they will not be alone), and raising their voices to encourage younger generations to join them as well as male counterparts to accept them as they are.

 

Sarah Stockdale proposes that women in tech; “Be a role model of how you can lead a successful career while supporting women… Challenge the people around you to get better and do better… The more women feel empowered and supported, the less we’ll need this harmful persona.”

 

As part of the Xennials generation (those people who came into the tech boom in our 20s and had a childhood free of social media) I also feel that while we can be mentors we are also in need of mentoring even by the younger generations, the Millenials (those who were born into and live and breathe tech). All generations have something of value to share so we need to explore how best we can combine our “super powers” for the greater good.

 

  1. Dealing with Sexual Harassment cases head on

 

It always breaks my heart when I come across numerous cases of sexual harassment where, instead of getting assistance, the “victim” ends up feeling like they should have kept their grievance to themselves because reporting such cases often leads to intimidation and further victimisation. Sometimes it is subtle such as being subjected to unfavourable working conditions or more obvious ways such as non renewal of work contracts or transfers to less favourable environments. What we can do in these cases is to take ALL reported (and non-formally reported) cases of sexual harassment seriously and to deal professionally and timeously with them.

 

Sarah suggests that we, “Challenge corporate norms and values that can lead to sexist nonsense. If one of your corporate values is “aggressiveness”, start there.” A contributor named Stormy also added that it is important to back up the people who do speak up when there are inappropriate ‘casual’ jokes or comments. And that it can be done privately if publicity is not your thing. Women should not be made to feel like they are ‘uptight’, ‘emotional’, ‘overly sensitive’ and cannot handle a ‘joke’.  The ones who speak up should also not be labelled ‘scary’, ‘difficult’, ‘annoying’ and ‘over reactionary’.

 

In addition, Rui Mai points out that, “… to avoid any sort of confrontation or conversation about it because to say anything is just automatically equated to complaining and weakness. When it’s precisely the opposite. It takes courage to speak up. Strong girls speak up. Cool girls speak up.”

 

  1. Addressing the “Bro-culture”

 

Sarah states that, “If your company doesn’t perpetuate the kind of culture that makes women feel like they need to be ‘one of the boys’, they won’t need the coping mechanism of the ‘cool tech girl’.” Some companies invariably prefer to hire someone that they can easily relate to or someone that they can ‘have a beer with’. This immediately discards women who are pregnant, trying to get pregnant, breastfeeding, of a particular religious or health standing and anyone who personally is neither a socialite nor a beer or alcohol drinker. Mothers, religious staunches and recovering alcoholics become the wrong fit in the ‘bro-culture’ environment according to Ryan Mitchell’s analysis.

 

On the other hand, Nikki J. North makes a valid point in that what we should focus on is not enabling sexism. The so called ‘bro-culture’ may just be what some females are comfortable with and appreciate because… after all we are all INDIVIDUALS. My thoughts on this are that while it is obviously impossible if not absolutely ridiculous to expect a culture or environment that suits everyone comfortably, from where I’m standing, when at work we should all be valued for our different contributions no matter what shape and form they take as long as our performance ultimately promotes the company’s standing in the marketplace despite our personal tastes and preferences. To be made to feel less valuable or an improper fit because of one’s beliefs, preferences, age or sex is an absolute No! No! And any practices that do not promote retention or attraction of women into their industry of choice should be re-evaluated with a progressive mindset. A possible solution would be to make an attempt to accommodate everyone (based on skill, competency, merit) without being too one sided towards one particular sex.

 

  1. Promote development across the board

 

There will be need to build programs to train and grow female associates that leverage their technical and innovative skill sets. Women and men need equal opportunities to grow and thrive.

 

  1. Re-assess job roles

 

In my experience as a labour lawyer and consultant one of the reasons that cause women to leave seemingly promising careers is that women are consciously or sub-consciously assigned projects that are execution oriented as opposed to creative and innovative roles. Even where women are in leadership or strategic roles their input is not given the same weight at the table in contributing to the strategic development of key products and business goals. It would be helpful to assign projects without employing any gender or age biases and assessments can be made thereafter.

 

  1. Recognize and acknowledge

 

The contributions of both men and women should receive the same weight and be recognized and highlighted in the same measure.

 

  1. Recruitment and hiring practices free from prejudice

 

I suppose it goes without saying that in today’s enlightened and advanced world job postings and hiring practices should have gender neutral approaches and descriptions and yet I have experienced and so have some of my peers and clients, the clear prejudice in recruitment by some companies based on gender and the perceived limitations that come with being female. I specifically remember when I was younger being asked at the third interview in one company how many children I had, if I had reliable child care, if I planned on having more children in the near future and a whole host of other inappropriate and irrelevant questions which were designed to ascertain my ‘suitability’ for that particular environment. Having a mixed gender interview panel or team is also recommended.

 

  1. Retention and advancement

 

It has been recommended that evaluation of performance be done on an equal and objective basis not based on personality or gender. There should be “constructive feedback and clear yet challenging goals to maximize associate development.” (Insights provided by Jodi Goglin in an article titled: “Women Are Opting Out of IT, Here’s How to Bring Them Back”).

 

In conclusion, I would like to point out that while women opt into or out of tech jobs for different and unique reasons, and that while pursuing a tech career can largely be considered an option, the reality is not as simple as it may seem. We still have, in local and global cases, women and girls who are not privileged to have the options, who are discouraged by different factors from pursuing their passions, who feel unworthy or incapable of competing in that space, who lack self confidence or information, who do not have visible role models or mentors, who are not given fair and equal opportunities from the word go, who are subjected to unfavourable or sexist cultures and environments, who are not recognized or valued for their contributions and who are given less creative, innovative and “worthy” roles. There is still need to take a bit more interest in the issues raised as opposed to the dismissive and demeaning undertones that usually accompany the discussions on a “Woman’s Worth” in the workplace. These mindset and attitude shifts will certainly assist companies to succeed and reach a wider market for the greater good.

Women in Tech Week Launched- 400 Events in Over 40 Countries Globally

 

 WOMEN IN TECH LOGO 4151px-SAP_2011_logo.svgEDELpng-270x270

Press Release 

Women in Tech Africa hosts first and largest ever women gathering on technology in Africa. (over 400 events planned in 40 countries)

 

Accra, 18 May 2016 — Over 3000 women working in technology from across Africa and the diaspora will be meeting physically and virtually in over 40 countries across Africa and the Diaspora to discuss barriers and opportunities for  women and girls working in technology.  The event, Women in Tech Week, organized by Women in Tech Africa will kick off from 26-30th September 2016 in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

 

Women in Tech Week is the 1st and largest ever all women event to be held in Africa. It is a  5-day event aimed at bringing together various players supporting growth of women in technology and leadership.

 

The event, which is jointly organised by Women in Tech Africa with support from software giant SAP global will include curated user generated events with partners across 40 countries bringing together 40,000 users onsite and virtually.

 

“This is a collaborative attempt to build a pan-African network, allowing us women to compare our challenges, learn from other countries and connect across borders to expand our influence,” said Founder of Women in Tech Africa and CEO of Edel Technology Consulting, Ethel Cofie

 

In Africa, technology is till seen as a male dominated field, so many  women in Africa,

working in technology find it challenging and at times an isolating experience. The impact of this can limit women’s professional growth in the sector.

 

Women need mentors, role-models and a network to share their experiences, challenges and skills. The magnitude of this event in Africa is unprecedented and presents an opportunity for women in this field to brainstorm on how to unlock the continent’s potential,” Ms Cofie added.

 

The week long event will discuss issues such the role of women  in building Africa’s digital economy, opportunities for research and why there is the need to invest in women interested in pursuing careers in this field.

 

There is more information on the event website: http://techweek.womenintechafrica.com

 

>>ENDS>>

 

 

 

Notes for Editors

For interviews and comments on this event, please contact, Adisa Amanor-Wilks (in London), madylans@hotmail.com, or +44 (0) 7553505101

 

For Partnerships and Sponsorships please contact partnerships@womenintechafrica.com or ethel.cofie@womenintechafrica.com

 

 

About women in tech Africa

Women in Tech Africa is a membership charity supporting women working in technology across Africa to positively Support their Communities. Women in Tech Africa has membership of over 30 countries on the continent and in the diaspora – Ghana, Kenya and London, South Africa and Nigeria among others. Some of our activities include:

  • Programming to support children choosing Science Technology and Math Careers
  • Training Female entrepreneurs on the use of technology to grow their business
  • Networking and Thought Leadership Events for Women in Tech
  • Partnering with industry players to bring job and growth opportunities to our members.

For more information, visit womenintechafrica.com

 

 

In the world of technology, when one woman helps another, amazing things can happen

In Africa’s male-dominated technology (tech) scene, women remain largely underrepresented. Yet there is a growing sense that a handful of incredible women are setting new standards and encouraging others especially younger women to become “techy”. Many believe that when one woman helps another, amazing things can happen-professional careers leap forward.

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Yes indeed, amazing things do happen. I recently attended one of these gatherings where established women professionals in technology were mentoring young women aspiring to take their STEM careers a step further.

I feel lucky. My generation is seeing a paradigm shift both in women’s reception to Science and technology information- a field which traditionally was considered male dominated – and the support that women are giving each other these days. It’s a remarkable turnaround! I kid you not. It’s been a long journey.

This mentoring session was organized by Women in Tech Africa. An organisation borne out of the perseverance and persistence of likeminded women on the continent, spearheaded by Ethel Cofie.

In her own words, Ethel says:

“Working in technology can, at times, be an isolating experience for women, especially in Africa. The impact of this can limit women’s professional growth in the sector. Women need mentors, role-models and a network to share their experiences, challenges and skills. Some Women in Technology clubs exist already, but to date, no-one has attempted to build a pan-African network, allowing us to compare our challenges, learn from other countries and connect across borders to expand our influence.”

Apart from founding WITA, Africa’s largest women in tech group with members in over 30 Africa countries and physical chapter in Ghana ,Kenya  and London, Ms. Cofie is also CEO and Founder of EDEL Technology Consulting (An IT Consulting and Digital Products Company in West Africa and Europe). She know too well hoow difficult it can be for anyone aspiring to set up their own IT start ups:

 “Starting my own business was a struggle; a lot of ups and downs to the extent that I had to shut down, get corporate jobs and restart from zero. This is because I had at that time not much knowledge or anyone to advise me on how to nurture and grow a startup, customer acquisition and retention among other. I decided to start a school to help other women on insight into beginning a startup.”

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written by: Adisa Amanor Wilks – communications professional passionate about Africa.

And Gloria Dogbey – Innovation Analyst with EDEL Technology Consulting and Coordinator of Women in Tech Africa

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also at the event was Angela Mazza the Chief Operating Officer (COO) for .  She told us about her journey as a woman navigating the world of technology, and what it means to her to be in her position in one of the biggest software development companies in the world.

Read more about Angela>>

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Women in Tech Africa fix a problem!

Press Release

Women in Tech Africa fix a problem!

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In many organizations, the excuse for not having women in senior management teams or women in the pipeline of people they interview for available positions is that cannot find qualified women for these positions.

A large number of technology events usually have very few women speakers and the explanation is the same, we cannot find women in the area to invite to speak.

Women in Tech Africa is solving this problem: since we are the largest group of capable women in the technology industry, we are in a position to show case capable women in the industry who might not necessarily be visible.

Our solution is simple, making the invisible visible; we have created a database of a cross section of our members and links to their LinkedIn profiles and tags of their specialties to help women in tech be found.

The Database is searchable by skill set, country and other details. So today Women in Tech Africa happily invites recruiters, chief executive officers, event organizers in Africa to come and find their next hire, next speaker or even their next board member  at www.womenintechafrica.com

The Front facing cross section member’s page can be found at thttp://www.womenintechafrica.com/amazing-women-in-tech/

There are over 250 women highlighted on the page based on their preference to be highlighted and we work steadily to grow the database to over 5000 women across all of Africa.

Women in Tech Africa is the largest Women in Tech group on the continent with membership of women in over 30 countries across Africa

Why do we need diversity in technology?

Increased innovation

A diverse workforce gives organizations a broader range of ideas and insights to draw on, in decision making and policy development. Diversity makes good business sense.

Improved service to clients

A workplace that reflects the population will understand its clients better, which will lead to improved service. A diverse workplace will have good communication with its clients based on a deep understanding of the needs across the province.

Competitive management practices

Organizations that value and capitalize on employee diversity have productive and fulfilling workplaces which help them attract and retain employees. This leads to savings in recruitment and training costs, as well as maintaining corporate knowledge and expertise.

More Money

Companies that embrace diversity gain higher market share and a competitive edge in accessing new markets – a ‘diversity dividend’ first quantified in a recent study by the Center for Talent Innovation (CTI). Business leaders increasingly recognize this.

About Women in Tech Africa

Women in Tech Africa focused on two main goals encouraging women and girls into Science, Technology, careers and preventing women dropping out of technology roles and careers through education, providing opportunities and by sharing experiences and supporting the corporations that hire them.

We have membership of women in 30 countries across Africa, with physical chapters in Ghana, United Kingdom and Kenya and looking to launch in Nigeria and South Africa by the end of 2015.

Women in Tech Africa was founded by Ethel Cofie from Ghana, joined by cofounders Charlene Migwe from Kenya and Josiah Eyison from Ghana.

Learn more about us on YouTube https://youtu.be/N1CAC6btNyc or on our website www.womenintechafrica.com

To Find out more or support the initiative email the team partnerships@womenintechafrica.com

 

 

 

Sponsor Women in Tech Africa Kenya Chapter Launch

After a successful diaspora launch in London ,women in tech Africa  is launching in Kenya on the 10th of September at iHub with strong impressive line up of Speakers including.

Wambui Kinya – Managing Director – Africa at ThoughtWorks

Amrote Abdella -Director, Venture Capital & Start-ups, Microsoft Africa Initiatives

Linet Kwamboka CEO at DataScience LTD (Nairobi)

Amanda Gicharu Kemoli Co-Founder & Program Director Tech Republic Africa

Angela Oduor Lungati Director of Community at Ushahidi

KenyaSpeaker

Over the years Women in Tech Africa has grown to include Women in the technology sector in over 30 countries across Africa supporting networking, opportunity creation and entrepreneurs. As such Women in Tech Africa (Kenya Chapter) would like to invite you to consider becoming one of our 2015/2016 Corporate Sponsor.

Email us at ethel.cofie@womenintechafrica.com if you want to be part of this historic launch

WHY SPONSOR

Business sponsorship is a major source of funding for many events as more and more companies have discovered this to be a powerful marketing tool. Building and strengthening your company brand through effective visibility is one of the key essentials in business strategy. To be effective, sponsorship of any event must serve the interest of four constituent groups: · It must serve the business interest of the sponsoring company · It must serve the best interests of the event and its participants · It must have a positive impact upon the sponsor’s direct consumers · It must benefit the consumers who use the products or services Keeping in mind the above points we have laid down our efforts towards achieving the same

 

Sponsoring the Women in Tech Africa event in Kenya will mean you organization will be publicly recognized for supporting the cause of diversity in the technology sector in Africa and support for Women in Leadership

This includes the following:

  • Promotional opportunities to build brand awareness and loyalty through presence on
  1. Banners
  2. Invitations
  3. Paragraph on Company profile on the event sub-site in the Sponsor section
  • The Opportunity for 5 min Speaker Spot at the event
  • Services promoted at event.

 

Kenya is Ready to go live

On the 10th of September the Women in Tech Africa Kenya group will be launched at iHub in Nairobi

Congratulations to Sylvia Mukasa( Chapter Lead) and Charlene  Nyambura Migwe for putting this amazing event together .

The free tickets for the event  launch will be available from  Friday 12pm East Africa time zone.  please check back here for the link 

Details

Date: September 10th 2015

Theme: Women Leadership and the African Technology Dialogue

Target Audience: Women working in the technology sector and  technology thought leaders across Africa

Location: iHub Nairobi,4th Floor, Bishop Magua Centre, Ngong Rd, Nairobi, Kenya

Speakers

Wambui Kinya – Managing Director – Africa at ThoughtWorks

Amrote Abdella -Director, Venture Capital & Start-ups, Microsoft Africa Initiatives

Linet Kwamboka CEO at DataScience LTD (Nairobi)

Amanda Gicharu Kemoli Co-Founder & Program Director Tech Republic Africa

 

Women in Tech Africa Ghana Chapter Quarterly Business Event

IMG-20150710-WA0004July 9th Women in Tech Ghana Chapter’s Quarterly Business Event

See Video and Pictures Below


 

 

Mentoring Girls to Embrace Tech the Vision of Virginia Wairimu

The dynamism in technology is one of the reasons I choose this career, there is not one boring moment when you are in the technology world. We all wake up and there is something different each day, it’s thrilling and exciting. Being a lady in technology is even better; the look of surprise on people’s faces when you tell them you are an IT specialist makes one feel good about one’s self. The journey has been both exciting and full of challenges while some of us women might lose hope along the way, I choose to hang on and fight.

I love science and engineering and it’s my hope that we can get as many girls as possible to do same. In my college class five years ago, we were only ten girls out of an estimated sixty students, out of the ten a few of us graduated and currently I know of none of them who is actively into the technology profession. Well that is a sad situation in itself and one that we all need to work hard to change. Things are changing fast though and more women are taking up science, engineering and technology courses but we are not there yet.

After school I joined Flex communications which is a software development company as a programmer ,I was also involved in customizing custom-made software’s to fit organization’s needs. Programming is a challenging career and it’s even hard when you are lady and you have people who believe you cannot deliver because of your gender. I had many incidences where I would get assigned only simple tasks while my male colleagues got all the challenging projects. It was demoralizing but I have always had a positive attitude and a fighting spirit.

After leaving Flex I joined CARE international, an NGO dealing with humanitarian work as an ICT officer where am currently working, I do IT support and ensure the daily running of technical and communication equipment’s for the organization, besides that I also develop different kinds software’s and market them to companies as a side business.

My goal is to setup Computer labs in primary and secondary schools across Kenya and equip them with computers, trainers and internet. We will introduce computer skills to girls at a younger age and help them build a good foundation of technology. We will also mentor these girls to take up STEM courses when they join institutions of higher learning. We want women to take up more science courses since the field is under represented with a huge percentage of the jobs in science being done by men.

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Virginia Wairimu  is Kenyan IT graduate with Bias in software development using Vb.Net, C# among other languages as well as IT software & Hardware support and networking. I’m hoping to start coding classes for young girls and ladies to mentor them to join IT and the Tech world. Currently I’m working as an ICT officer with CARE International in Kenya, which is an international NGO dealing with humanitarian activities among other projects; previously I have worked with Flex Communications as a Software developer. I also have an interest in writing and photography.

I’m in the process of initiating a project that will see young girls in primary and secondary schools get formal training on technology which will include basic computer skills to advanced education such as coding as well as mentorship to these girls to encourage them to take up science and engineering courses. We will also train them on how to be creative and innovative using technology and also use technology for enterprise purposes.

Exciting Speakers for the Women in Tech Africa UK Event

On the 9th of July 2015 , Women in Tech Africa will be launching the Diaspora group in London UK .

Please book you tickets on Eventbrite

We have the pleasure of  announcing exciting speakers

Lola Oyelayo

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A passionate designer and researcher and with over 10 years experience in the field, Lola has developed her skills working in multi-disciplinary teams in large organisations and digital agencies, delivering delightful digital products. A self-confessed perfectionist, Lola is extremely vocal and knowledgeable about creating a sustainable future for user-centred thinking and design, a journey which has seen her become Scrum Certified and an official member of the “Agile is best” club.

Rashada Harry

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Rashada is responsible for driving fixed infrastructure business opportunities in a global capacity at Vodafone Global Enterprise. She possesses a strong track record of new business development, account management and consultative selling into Enterprise client organisations offset against aggressive sales targets (in excess of $50m). Prior to joining Vodafone she spent 10 years with Cisco where she worked as a global business development manager for EMEAR (Europe Middle East Africa & Russia).  She is co-Director of “Your Future Your Ambition” (www.yourfutureyourambition.com) an initiative aimed at creating an awareness and encouraging young people from diverse backgrounds that studying Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) at school, college or university can open doors to an array of careers. Rashada was a STEM Leader finalist in the 2014 inaugural Black British Awards and is a nominee in the National Diversity Awards 2015.

Ethel Cofie

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Ethel Cofie is CEO and founder of EDEL Technology Consulting, an IT consulting and digital products company, and Mandela Fellow for President Obama’s Young African Leaders Initiative. A high caliber IT professional with over 12 years’ experience working in the UK, Ghana, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone, she has worked on the Bill and Melinda Gates Mobile Technology for Health project and the Ford Foundation”s Election Monitoring project for Nigeria. She also served as head of commercial solutions for Vodafone. She is the founder of Women in Tech Africa, which brings together women in over 30 countries, and will open offices in Zambia, Nigeria, Canada, Democratic Republic of Congo and Benin in the coming months. She initiated the first pan-African Women in Tech meet up and was a finalist for the United Nations Gender Equality Mainstreaming – Technology Award for her work supporting women in IT. She has been featured on BBC and CNN for her work, and she sits on the boards of numerous companies in Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa.

Emem Rita Usanga

Emem Usanga is the CEO and Co-Founder of InvestWell. She has 18 years business development experience in the media industry from magazines to digital, in corporates and startups. Emem previously worked for companies such as WPP’s 24/7 Real Media and Glow Digital Media. InvestWell is the sixth startup that she will be working in and her first foray into Finance

Josiah Kwesi Eyison

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Josiah Kwesi Eyison,  Co-Founder and CEO of iSpace Foundation, bringing more than 15 years of experience and expertise in management. Kwesi holds a HND in New Technology, Media and Communication from University of East London and a Business Management degree with the open university.

He was the West Africa Regional CEO for Quintessentially, a luxury concierge service company with over 40 offices worldwide. Josiah was the Events and Business  Development Manager for Learning Without Frontiers, a global platform for thinkers and practitioners from the education, digital media, technology and entertainment sectors who come together to explore how new disruptive technologies can drive radical efficiency and importance in learning.