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

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.

Envisioning My World – Emily Achieng

I trace my interest in technology to a childhood passion. My passion came from a place of insight and simplicity. I used to scoff and cringe during my High School years on hearing that there are not enough women in technology. Much in my current life has been shaped by my younger years; a gradually developed interest that has in a long run influenced me in a good way.

Alongside being a technology enthusiast, I am a writer. I am doing lots of poetry to be a better engineer one time. I find writing and programming similar in the sense that they both involve lone time trying to create something interesting. Their brevity and hidden meaning and all make me know myself better. That inward energy gives me a great feeling of accomplishment.

I derive most of my energy from being surrounded by people. Meeting incredible people has made me view life through a hue and tint of imagination. It is through these tech gatherings that I have managed to answer my endless questions to satisfy my curiosity.  I am now conscious that technology was meant for me. There is no mechanical way of learning other than the golden chance of brushing shoulders with people and talking to them. To me, actualizing a dream begins with talking. I have talked to many women I have met and we have shared our interests, what the world lacks, happenings that affect us in a way.

I admire women who have influenced a change in the technology world from afar. I dream of being there too someday. The world is crying out for more women who can venture in technology, and I want to be one of the women who can elbow their way out of patriarchy to silence the cry.

Em Pic

Bio 

“Achieng’ Emily is a Kenyan technology lover and writer. She loves watching stars at night. And better still, looks at them more than most people do. ”

Dreaming Tech-My Journey

I chose a career in tech because I love to be dynamic and to move with current trend of business. Technology does the same and automatically suits my personality-the evolver! With technology, I can experiment and find solutions. I have worked in various sectors but the technology aspect of it all is what gave me the kick.

My dream has always been to use technology to bring a positive impact to the community and businesses.

My area of focus is in ICT & Telecoms Consulting. In Africa, the mobile phone remains a powerful tool, so I like to use technology and tie it around the mobile phone to find solutions through Interactive Voice Response (IVR) and incorporating Cloud Computing to come up with Cloud-based solutions.

My journey into tech started after pursuing an MSc E-Business in 2001 in the UK when doing business on the internet was foreign in many parts of Africa, but I am glad to see ICT being embraced in businesses today in Africa.

I always wanted to start my own business since I want to drive things my way, so I founded GlobalX Investments Ltd in late 2012 after working with Ericsson, a telecommunications giant, in a Strategic Planning role covering 43 countries in Sub Saharan Africa. I hope to grow my business in Cloud-based Technologies through viable partnerships and innovation. My company, GlobalX has recently partnered with VMware as a Solution Provider. In line with this offer, VMware hosted me for my TechWomen Fellowship in the Silicon Valley in October 2014.

I worked on a mentorship project on Network Function Virtualisation (NFV) for Telco’s during my stint at VMware since I wanted to know more about new trends in Cloud Computing and Telecommunications.
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Photo:Sylvia visiting the Microsoft Offices in Mountain View, Silicon Valley as part of TechWomen.

My journey so far has been challenging in terms of defining a business model and interesting since I have been trying many new things to shape my model. I keep reinventing my business model to reflect and incorporate emerging technologies. I have been pursuing and upgrading accreditation related to my areas of interest/focus to remain relevant and meet market requirements. I keep abreast with new technological trends through avid reading, networking, attending webinars and through social media.
My tech dreams are valid, and so are yours. I will keep going.

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Sylvia is a ‘’Techpreneur’’ (Entrepreneur in Technology) based in Nairobi, Kenya. She is a TechWomen Alumni, an Initiative of the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, selected as an Emerging leader from Africa & the Middle East. She is passionate about empowering girls in STEM. Sylvia also runs an online travel portal dial-a-safari.com.
www.globalxinvestmentsltd.com
www.dial-a-safari.com
sylviamukasa@globalxinvestmentsltd.com
https://www.linkedin.com/in/sylviamukasa

IMPACTING AFRICAN BUSINESSES: ONE BUSINESS AT A TIME

selasi

My dream is to become a business management expert. I chose this career because, I want to help businesses make the right business decisions for success.
The journey has not been easy because I never studied any business related course in high school or the University for that Matter except a little entrepreneurship I studied as a minor course during my undergraduate studies in Bsc. Agricultural Engineering. After graduation, I was posted to a bank to do my national service. I found it very confusing working in a business environment when I was coming from an engineering background. But I later realized that I was doing very well in that area. When I completed my national service, my mum who also runs multiple businesses, employed me as a manager for her businesses that gave me the opportunity to nurture my skills and gain a certain level of expertise. I began to execute my duties with so much flare and translated leads into sales.
My appointment as regional coordinator for Youth Enterprises and Skills Development Center (YESDEC) catapulted my business management desire to another level. My region was adjudged the best during the project period. Since then I have managed and still managing other promising businesses.
My dream is to reach the highest echelon in business management and strategy not only in Africa but internationally. Also to impact positively into the business culture focusing on African businesses.
In order to achieve this, I will equip myself with the right knowledge, gain more practical experience and make a positive impact at every opportunity that comes my way.

SHORT BIO
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Selasi Segbedzi holds a BSc. in Agricultural Engineering from Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology. She also holds an Executive Certificate in Projects Management. She
Oversees the day-to-day management and strategic direction of Jayset Consulting. She focuses on building high-performing teams, continuously improving our solutions and clients’ experiences, and identifying new services at the center of transparency and accountability, results management.
Selasi Segbedzi also served as the Regional Coordinator for Youth Enterprises and Skills Development Centre (YESDEC), a social intervention and innovation programme that develops the skills of young entrepreneurs, creating jobs and making jobs more accessible and actionable. Selasi has extensive experience in management, team leading and projects/programmes management, and working with governments and donors.
Previously, Selasi worked with Ghana Commercial Bank as a Back Office Executive, Barclays Bank as a Support Staff and currently at Afromod Trends as Operations Manager

Our Android development Lecturer is a lady-Rachael Orum

Not just Girls go to school; it is Girls to Tech …

Our Android development Lecturer is a lady!!!

I get this expression of surprise from students every time I step into a class for the first time. My name is Rachael Orum or [G+], and I am a woman in Tech.
I have great passion for Technology, this passion begun 8years ago (2007) when I was a level 100 student in the ICT Department at the “Université Africaine de Technologie et Management” Cotonou, Republic. of Benin
I finished my Masters in Software Development Engineering in 2012. I learnt a lot while serving as an intern in some software laboratories in Benin and in Cameroun during my studies.

Coupled with my software orientation is a Degree in Linguistics which I acquired at the “Université D’Abomey Calavi”, Calavi. Rep. of Benin in 2009.
I am an impending Doctorate Degree student in Computer Linguistics; I developed a prototype “Yoruba Language Individualized Language Learning ” software which I intend to work on.

I lecture programming languages (web and mobile) and databases at the “Université Africaine de Technologie et Management” since 2012. I also founded the [UATM Developers Orb] and the [Cercle de s développeurs de l’UATM]

I run a start up company [SENS ORBIT] since 2013; we have deployed soft solutions for some companies here in Benin. I am currently leading the Google Developers Group [Women Tecmakers’ community at Abomey Calavi], Republic of Benin.

I Chose Software Development engineering because I want to make the world a better place by creating software that solve people’s problems. Also, sharing what I know is an exciting thing for me. I love to teach young and passionate youth like myself.

Down the road of teaching tech.

My interest in Female Technological Awareness aroused when I was in level 100 in the University and found myself in a class of 40 boys with only 2 girls. I immediately realized that most girls do not have the luxury of having parents and folks like mine who made me believe I can do anything I love to do.

This became a clarion call for me. Through my few years of Lecturing, I encourage my students to go for the Software Development specialty; the female students in particular.

This has not yielded much fruit as the number of female students in the ICT department is still very few and those of them going for the Software Development specialty are even fewer. I cross-checked with other schools here in Benin, The statistics are the same.

This is because most students if not all, already decide what they want to become before filling a university admission form.

The solution to this, would only be introducing programming to girls before they are able to decide which career they want to venture in; that is WHEN THEY ARE STILL IN SECONDARY SCHOOLS/HIGH SCHOOLS.

Decision comes from interest; interest is birthed by knowledge.

I believe that the decrease in the number of females in the software industry is not a question of lack of interest but rather that of orientation. My vision is to have a lot Girls who go to school to study software development
This vision will become a reality when more girls decide to dive into the world of information Technology at all levels.

This can be achieved if we center where girls can learn programming after school.
We are sure to raise over 5000 girl developers within the space of 3 years.

THIS IS MY DREAM…

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Bio 

Lecturer

African University of Technology and Management

Algorithms, Web Programming, Xml galaxy and Databases

Links 

[G+] 

[Girls who code] 

[SENS ORBIT] 

[Women Techmakers community at Abomey Calavi] 

[UATM Developpers Orb] 

My Story-Marian Tesfamichael

MY Story

Marian Tesfamichael

I have always been fascinated with computers and about how things work. I can remember the first course I took when I was in high school was Pascal, and I recall just how overly excited I was to program my first code.

My passion for solving complex problems on the computer grew into wanting to understand how information from various sources comes together to form something meaningful. It is in my greatest ambition to not only contribute to the field, but also to encourage other young women to work in the field of Information and Computing.

My undergraduate education background is in Computer Science and Mathematics.
I am also a Project Management Professional. I am currently doing my Master of Information Systems at University of Toronto, Canada.

Over the past 10 years, I have used my interests and education in computing and information in all my employment experiences to create applications for end users of all background. These applications have helped streamline business processes within the organizations.

There are not many women in technology, but there are even a lot fewer African women in technology. I want to inspire young women in high school and colleges to pursue careers in the technology field and to be movers and shakers in the ever growing technology arena. As an African woman, I also plan to share my own experiences in technology field and its successes with my local African Community.

Bio

Marian Tesfamichael ( Toronto)

Connect on Linkedin

•Over 10 years experience in web and desktop application development, project management, and data analysis
• Research and Organizational skills, Project Management skills, Documentation skills
• Multi-tasking and Time management skills
• Good Communication and interpersonal skills
• Proficiency in JAD session, Use Cases, Workflows, System Requirements Specifications, Functional and Non-Functional Requirements
• Experience in Software Development Life Cycle
• Expertise in database design and migration.
• Wire Framing and Data Mapping.

Nisha follows her Instincts

My name is Nisha Maharaj, MD of Niche Integrated Solutions- South Africa. I have an accumulated service record of 20 years within the Banking, Financial services and Telecommunications sectors of which more than 14 years have been served at either Senior or Executive Management level. In addition, I am a specialist in unsecured lending (microfinance). After having spent decades in financial services, I decided to embark on my own entrepreneurial journey in business.

Whilst exploring my options, I stumbled into the world of business in technology. All my consulting assignments led to problems around operational efficiencies which only technology could solve. In the space of the commercial and financial services arena in South Africa, we do not have very robust home grown technologies so I researched the globe to find solutions that could bring value to South Africa.

I was very fortunate to have cultivated partnerships with some of the global leaders in technology, to bring these solutions to my country. We have made headlines since my first year of operation having won two major bids with two South African banks, I saw success instantly with technology. Not only am I happy that I Decided to follow my instincts, I am also making a significant difference to the South African financial services arena, and our customers are satisfied. Technology has the potential to make your dreams come true –it changes the past, present and future

Author BIO

Nisha Maharaj(South Africa) CEO of NICHE INTEGRATED SOLUTIONS-SOUTH AFRICA

CEO of Airtel,Dep MD of UT Bank and others Speak at Women in Tech Africa

Women in Tech Africa (Ghana Chapter) in collaboration wit USAID and IREX on the 27th of April  organized a special session Women and Technology at the Alissa Hotel in  Accra.

Speaking at the events was :

CEO Airtel Ghana ( Lucy Quist) first female CEO of a  multinational telecommunications company in Ghana

Deputy Managing Director UT Bank  and one of the most powerful personalities in Banking in Ghana( Pearl Esua-Mensah)

Director of Mobile Web Ghana ( Florence Toffa)

Director of Innovation Grameen Foundation

CEO of EDEL Technology Consulting and Founder Women in Tech Africa

Citifm was on hand to  feature our speakers on their #Cititrends program . listenhere