Girls4Tech aims to boost the talent of one million girls by 2025

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This article was written and published in Spanish and has been translated into English via Google Translate. Click here to read the original article.

Cybersecurity and artificial intelligence (AI) are two of the most thriving technological fields of today, and new job opportunities are emerging daily. However, globally, women occupy less than 20% of jobs in the field of high technology, and only one in 20 young people opt for a STEM career (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).

In order to help close this gap, Mastercard has been working with young technology enthusiasts for five years through Girls4Tech, its training platform. On its fifth anniversary, this STEM program, with an eminently practical approach, has already reached more than 400,000 girls between the ages of 8 and 12 in 25 countries, data that duplicates the objectives that had been set for 2017, and that go in line with the new objective that the company has set: reach a million girls in 2025.

A goal that will seek to achieve through a fun and instructive program, built around global standards of science and mathematics. In this sense, the platform, which integrates Mastercard's extensive experience in innovation and payment technology, includes topics such as encryption, fraud detection, data analysis and digital convergence.

In fact, such was the initial success of this program, back in 2014, that one year later Mastercard decided to bring it to Europe, where it has managed to boost the interest of girls in STEM careers, helping to break down barriers. Thus, Girls4Tech has already reached 3,110 girls from 13 cities spread across 9 European countries, launching a total of 27 events thanks to the collaboration of 181 Mastercard volunteers who, with 2,900 hours of work, have helped in tutoring tasks and support within the program.

According to Susan Warner, Senior Vice President of Global Volunteer Programs at MasterCard, "today we celebrate that 400,000 girls have acquired new STEM skills through the Girls4Tech program and have discovered that the future of technology can and should include them." He adds: "We hope to have started many bright careers in the STEM fields because we are convinced that gender equality in technology will allow us to make our companies (and our society as a whole) better and stronger sites."

In addition, to prolong the interaction with previous participants, Mastercard has launched Girls4Tech 2.0. This new platform, designed for older students (between 13 and 16 years old), aims to keep alive the enthusiasm of these girls for the STEM disciplines in the critical years of the institute, also promoting the importance of 21st century skills, such as Collaboration, creativity and communication, working as a team and applying their technical knowledge to solve real world challenges.

On the other hand, Mastercard has revalidated and sealed new alliances to expand the scope of the program and reduce the gender gap in the field of STEM training. This is the case of Scholastic, with whom the company will continue collaborating until 2020; or American Airlines, a collaborating entity in the first edition of Girls4Tech Takes Flight, a two-day event in which 50 girls will have to develop innovative solutions to solve humanitarian problems raised by the United Nations in topics such as gender equality, smart cities and sustainability, health and well-being, and the quality of education.

According to Ann Amstutz Hayes, Senior Vice President of National Alliances at Scholastic, "both teachers and students are eagerly looking for resources that will help them connect curriculum standards to the real world of today and tomorrow." We are delighted to be able to collaborate with MasterCard in this important initiative to increase the visibility of STEM careers for students and to emphasize the importance of creative thinking and the ability to solve problems through training programs and in real life."

Likewise, in Ireland, together with the R & A golf organization, Mastercard has promoted a version of the initiative focused on this sport, where the participants come into contact with the STEM disciplines through an analysis of the business and scientific aspects of golf; and during this year, Mastercard will continue working with the Major League Baseball (MLB) to incorporate, in its academies and organizations for young people, personalized programs of Girls4Tech that include sports facets in their relationship with the STEM disciplines.

In the words of Del Matthews, vice president of Baseball Development at MLB, "Mastercard's Girls4Tech initiative has been a huge benefit for our youth academies, especially when it comes to offering young girls opportunities beyond the playing field. One of our goals with the network of youth academies is to open new worlds of possibilities and Girls4Tech is something that can help them prepare for different careers, both in the baseball world and in many others."

This article was written and published in Spanish and has been translated into English via Google Translate. Click here to read the original article.

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Acerca de Lucas Vargas:

  • Empezó en Grupo ZAP como el VP de Sales y en 2016 cuando la empresa tenía 60 empleados. Fue nombrado COO de VivaReal tomando el mando de Brian Requarth el Co-Fundador. VivaReal lanzó en Colombia y se trasladó a Brasil. En 2017 se hizo CEO del Grupo ZAP.
  • Ha trabajado en Mexico en PWC y en el Banco Santander
  • Tiene un Master de Business Administration de Harvard
  • En noviembre este año después de la fusión de OLX Brasil y Grupo ZAP fue nombrado el CEO del OLX Business Unit. Lidera la empresa junto con Andries Oudshoorn y Marcos Leite
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Simon Baker is the Founder and Executive Chairman of Online Marketplaces and Property Portal Watch. Involved with property portals for 15 years, he’s a well-recognized expert and industry consultant.
As former CEO/MD of the REA Group for 8 years, Simon led the group to its current market-leading position. When he joined REA Group in 2001, it had $4m in revenues, $6m in losses and an $8m market cap.
By 2008, the company presided over $155m in revenues, $35m in EBITDA and enjoyed a peak market cap of $1b. Simon is currently Chairman of the Mitula Group and Real Estate Investar and a serial portal founder and, investor.