Instill a love for science, tech, engineering, and math in your child with Girls4Tech
As our lives become increasingly dependent on online interactions, the world desperately needs equality in tech. While one in five boys ends up working in this expansive sector, only one in 20 girls winds up pursuing a career in science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM). Mastercard’s signature education program, Girls4Tech, believes the future of these fields should include equal representation. Now, while your whole family is at home together, this organization is offering complimentary access to its award-winning online educational programs and community.
Founded in April 2014 by Susan Warner, Vice President of Community Engagement at Mastercard, Girls4Tech has already engaged with over 970,000 girls ages 8 to 16 across 27 countries, with the goal of bridging the gender gap in the traditionally male-dominated STEM industries. The organization has always been firmly rooted in the motto "If you can see it, you can be it," and has assembled a roster of more than 4,400 Mastercard employees to serve as role models and mentors to young students.
“We know that these are challenging times for parents and teachers on many fronts and hope that these learning resources are a fun way to engage and inspire kids about STEM while at home,” says Warner. “The easy access to the Girls4Tech Connect website enhances what we’ve done in so many [in-person] workshops. We look forward to building on both efforts when it’s once again safe to gather in person.”
As schooling has shifted online due to COVID-19 and many of us have transformed into remote employees for the first time, one thing’s for sure: the post-coronavirus world will run very differently from the one we were used to. Online communications and remote workforces will only become more predominant, and with that will come the need for more experts in cybersecurity, data encryption, and fraud detection. Girls4Tech programs and activities are built to inspire girls to explore careers like cryptology, data science, and design engineering and get a taste for what they entail, all while incorporating Mastercard’s deep knowledge of payments technology and innovation.
Getting this kind of exposure to STEM early on can have a seriously positive impact on girls’ studies. As Warner puts it, “There’s not a girl in the world who walks into our building saying that they want to be a fraud detective, but they certainly do on their way out!”
With new activities posted every Tuesday and Thursday via the Girls4Tech Facebook page and recently launched Twitter account, this is an extraordinary opportunity for parents to encourage their children to learn about essential STEM topics like algorithms, data privacy, and cryptology. It’s also an exciting time for educators, since Girls4Tech provides teacher guides for group instruction in English, Spanish, French, and Portuguese, with curriculums in more languages (including Chinese and Arabic) coming soon. By engaging with girls at an early age about future career possibilities in STEM that are expected to be in high demand when they’re adults, the group’s leaders are confident that tech will see a future with more women leaders.
As Warner sums it up, “The Girls4Tech programs give a deep dive into subjects across so many STEM fields and showcase potential careers that the girls could have—Girls4Tech is truly the start of something priceless!”