It's only ten (10) days left to explore the chance to experience TechWomen 2018! Apply here!
Just a year ago, I was running against the clock to put in my application to participate in the TechWomen 2017 Program. Little did I know that I will not only was I going to be selected, but, I was going to blessed by an experience that has changed my life forever.
TechWomen is a five-weeks professional mentorship fellowship program in the U.S. and is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. The program expanded my horizons, both professionally and personally and i gained invaluable skills working with, not one or two, but three professional mentors at one of the innovative tech companies (Disney Interactive) in the Silicon Valley, San Francisco, California. I also got to experience life in the U.S. and was able to create lifelong friendships with amazing women from around the world. TechWomen brings women from 20 countries in Africa, the Middle East, and Central and South Asia to San Francisco, California, for a professional mentorship and exchange program with a goal to empower emerging women leaders in Science, technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) to reach their fullest potential, create social impact initiatives and inspire other girls and women in their communities. I am prouc to be a part of the TechWomen global network of leaders in STEM and I invite you to check out this unique opportunity and also share it with other prospective TecWomen in your community. I believe the TechWomen Program provides an incredible opportunity, not only for the participating women, but also for their communities.
When I was selected to participate in the TechWomen 2017 Program, I was hosted for my mentorship at Disney Interactive. And my mentorship started off with an amazing weekend at Disney Land, Los Angeles experiencing the fun rides, theatre shows,exclusive lunch with Disney Characters, and shopping (with discounts I can never forget). It was a memorable experience which quickly set back into work mode with strategic meetings with Senior VPs, VPs, Team Leads and so many valuable knowledge shared around project management and other learning that was valuable to me in my work with girls.I learned a lot about simple and engaging ways to innovate my coding program for girls and creative tools that are helpful. I also learned a lot about how to innovate our video content for girls and their influencers who form the target group for our video content. Equally helpful was my learning about the audience development system within Disney and how they observe and target their audience. Then, I learned a lot about the Apps and Games development within Disney, and trust me ladies, I had no idea how big Disney was on apps and games and experiencing some parts of the ShopDisney App Launch taught me so many lessons I took back to my workplace. I had three (3) amazing mentors who worked tirelessly to ensure my numerous questions were answered and I got all the resources and contacts I needed to meet my goals and objectives. And these amazing mentors have become my friends and sisters for LIFE! I was among 100 women from 21 Countries that participated in the Program and today, I have sisters from so many countries and Regions who would continue to be a huge support system to sustain my growth and innovative drive from TechWomen 2017.
The TechWomen Program also exposed us to so many leadership and social impact workshops that taught me so much about leadership and how important it is for me to work both as an individual and within teams to maximise social impact in my country. My highlights were the Clifton Strengths Finder Assessment and the Country Social Impact Project planning and pitching session, so many valuable learnings would stay with me for life from those sessions. The TechWomen Program often closes with a 1 week program at the US Department of State in Washington. The various sessions expose us to a number of women working within the STEM fields in the US Department of State and hearing their real-lived experiences challenging gender stereotypes and other personal and professional challenges in their careers was uplifting and inspiring and particularly helped me better visualize how global the challenge of women and girls in STEM is. And this is what constantly fuels me to keep thinking of creative ways to promote STEM among girls and women in Nigeria and I am ecstatic about the future of girls and women in STEM! Yes We Can!
Since my return in November, I have launched a unique Program, the Tech Girls Advocacy Program (TGAP) that trains adolescent girls in digital literacy skills and facilitates the girls to develop technology applications and resources to amplify their advocacy on social issues affecting girls in Nigeria, particularly Ending Child Marriage, Ending Gender-Based Violence, and Promoting Girls Education. For more on this project, visit Girls Voices Initiative's website http://www.girls-voices.org/tgap-2 or check out the website developed by some of the girls who participated in the project http://tgap.com.ng/ Another edition of the Program (TGAP) is scheduled to run from January to March 2018. And so many other creative STEM Programs would be implemented with girls in the course of the year. TechWomen set me off on this innovative ride promoting STEM among girls and women in my country.
I cannot overemphasize how life-changing the techWomen Program was for me. But, I encourage you, my World Pulse Sisters, to take a shot at this, Apply for TechWomen 2018 today! Apply here!