Taking a Giant Leap for Gender Equality-Emerging Opportunities – 31st Oct, 2020

National University of Sciences & Technology (NUST) NUST is the leading University of Science and Technology in Pakistan. Being a forerunner of the promotion of quality education and equality, it has also taken an initiative to address the gender gap in STEM Sciences. NUST faculty in collaboration with other national and international institutes is organizing 1st Workshop on gender equality-emerging opportunities for encouraging young girls to pursue their ambitions of a STEM career.

The Gender Gap in STEM is a pressing issue globally as women make up only 28% of the workforce in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). The gender gaps are particularly high in some of the fastest-growing and highest-paid jobs of the future, like computer sciences and engineering. The STEM gap is much more evident in Pakistan and has one of the highest gender gaps in world due to the low literacy rate.

According to UNESCO, amongst university students in Pakistan, the field of natural sciences is reported to have only 40% women students, whereas medical sciences have 45%, engineering has 21% and agricultural sciences have only 12%. According to the World Economic Forum, only 4.9% of engineering jobs are held by women in Pakistan. The numbers are particularly low in the energy sector with only 3% female engineers in the power transmission sector. The field of artificial intelligence has also seen few women engineers, with only 22% part of the workforce.

In the line to these efforts, Dr. Farkhanda Afzal, Assistant Professor at Military College of Signals (MCS), National University of Sciences & Technology (NUST) are participating in a workshop organized by StemWomenPK with collaboration of AlumNode & University of Lahore has undertaken the project to extend their support for females to participate in STEM. StemWomenPk has variegated forum to provide the female role models from various fields for STEM. The purpose is to educate and mentor women through outreach program that will provide sponsorship and networking from female role models in their prominent fields. The first workshop, in the series, has been organized at the university of Lahore titled, “Taking a giant Leap for Gender Equality – Emerging Opportunities”. The eminent women from the fields of engineering, technology and industry have been invited to educate female students through their motivational speeches to highlight the importance of female participation in STEM and guide them how to fight the societal biases & discrimination. Moreover, they will share their experiences in academia and professional life with the audience. The session will aspire female students to take part in STEM, educate them for career choices, and activate alumni to engage and activate industry links with female students.

In order to promote and encourage girls in STEM in Pakistan, Dr. Farkhanda Afzal, Assistant Professor at Military College of Signals (MCS), National University of Sciences & Technology (NUST) and her team in collaboration with prestigious AlumNode are promoting female role models in STEM. The project will create a platform showcasing Female Role models who are passionate to encourage young girls in STEM. The project aims at facilitating outreach among role models of young girls in Pakistan.

The main objective is to address gender and gender barriers in the scientific and academic communities. It will highlight the challenges faced by girls in STEM in general and how girls in Pakistan relate to this issue. We plan to attract as many female role models in STEM to share their journey and inspire girls in STEM Pakistan. We aim to establish a sound foundation for sustainable outreach linkages helping to reduce the gender gap in STEM Pakistan.

Key focus areas of this project/workshop are as follows;

• Emphasize strong and visible role models of women in math and science fields.
• To promote a growth mindset that empowers girls to embrace challenges
• Create/ outreach opportunities for girls in STEM Pakistan
• Creating strong linkages and networks to support girls in STEM Pakistan

For details visit website https://stemwomen.org.pk/home/events/

Program Details: Date:31 Oct 2021
09:00 – 10:00 Registration
10:00 – 10:30 Tilawat, Naat, National Anthem
10:30 – 10: 40 Opening Speech
10:40 – 11:00 First Talk (Dr. Tasneem Akhtar)
11:00 – 11:20 Second Talk (Dr. Rizwana)
11: 20 – 11:50 Third Talk (Mehr Nigar)
11:50 – 12:20 Tea Break
12:20 – 12:30 First Talk (Dr Minhas Mahsud)
12:30 – 12:40 Video Clip
12:40 – 13:10 Second Talk (Alia Razia Malik)
13:10 – 13:30 Video clip
13:30 – 13:50 Last Talk (Ayesha Ahmed)
13:50 – 14:20 Discussion Session
14:20 – 1450 Closing Ceremony
15:00 – 16:00 Lunch

Venue: Auditorium – I
The University of Lahore, Main Campus Lahore
Contact: 03486139548, 03000848344