Girls at St. Martin’s Senior High School had an inspiring taste of career opportunities in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) during a sharing session with professional women from Voltic Ghana Limited on International Women’s Day earlier this month.

About 300 young women students took part in the session, where they were able to find out more about questions they had for the team, ranging from financial aid to career progression in STEM beyond the scope of medical school.

Quality Assurance, Quality Controller at Voltic, Thelma Asiama, shared some of the challenges women face in pursuing a STEM career.

“It is not easy, but you have to persevere; I have built my career in this field, and so can you,” she said.

Eunice Nyarko, HR Business Partner at Voltic, talked about the wide range of opportunities in STEM fields. She said: “There are countless opportunities within this space; all you have to do is be determined.”

Expressing his appreciation to Voltic, the school’s Assistant Headmaster said, “We are grateful for this opportunity to share first-hand experiences with our female students. I believe this would guide them in making informed career choices”.

According to a recent article published by the World Bank, just 30 per cent of science professionals in Sub-Saharan Africa are women, and this needs to change for the continent to develop to its full potential.

“In an age of increasing digitalisation, climate change concerns, and health crises such as the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, the critical importance of scientific and technological capacity is more evident than ever.

“Individuals with advanced science, technology, engineering, and mathematics skills are crucial to push us to new frontiers and tackle urgent challenges. However, the potential of one group has been consistently under-harnessed in this regard: women.”

Believing that women are critical to Africa’s shared success, the subsidiary of Coca-Cola Beverages Africa has supported women’s career development in STEM fields.

Earlier this year, Voltic joined the non-profit organisation Girls in Science and Technology (GIST) to launch the GIST- University of Mines and Technology, Tarkwa chapter.

The programme introduced GIST to students at the university and promoted their participation in STEM while sparking their interest in the endless career opportunities available to them.

The programme also provided mentorship and guidance to girls from elementary school through to various universities.

Meanwhile, schoolgirls in Takoradi got a taste of a future in science and technology when they participated in a robotics training session sponsored by Voltic last year.

The 64 girls between ages 15 and 19 enjoyed a hands-on lesson in robot building to inspire them to pursue further studies and a career in the male-dominated STEM fields.