Cisco’s Girl Power Tech initiative to encourage ICT careers among women

Girl Power Tech
Participants at Cisco's Girl Power Tech 2015 connect with others using Cisco Telepresence

Sixty girls from various schools in the UAE will get to experience the latest technology first-hand, engage with industry professionals, and learn about the education and career experiences of Cisco’s women executives at the company’s Girls Power Tech initiative tomorrow. The event, part of a global effort to raise awareness about the need for girls to consider a career in ICT through Girls in ICT Day, will be held at Cisco’s Dubai offices in Knowledge Village.

“Globally, women comprise a mere 27 per cent of the computer science, engineering and physics fields and remain a largely untapped resource,” says Mike Weston, Vice President, Cisco Middle East.

During the event, students will present original ideas they have developed to create a positive impact and address day-to-day challenges and inconveniences. The projects submitted will be based on the use of technological innovation around the internet of things and align to Cisco’s vision of Changing the way we work, live, play and learn. Dubbed the Digital Rock Stars Challenge, the inter-school competition aims to ignite creativity and foster teamwork and entrepreneurial skills. A panel of judges will evaluate the work based on originality, ingenuity and feasibility.

Through its networking academies (ICT skills- and career-building programme), Cisco has helped more than 220,000 students in the Middle East graduate since their inception. With nearly 480 academies in the Middle East across 14 countries, Cisco has more than 44,000 students and over 1,000 instructors with the average female student participation standing at 37 per cent. The number of female students in the Middle East is high, where women account for 55 per cent in the UAE, 40 per cent in Jordan, and 63 per cent in Oman.