Girls participating in the RoboGirl 2023 training, aimed at empowering young girls in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) field, have high hopes that the program will pave the way for them in the innovation solutions industry.
Coordinated by the Durban University of Technology in collaboration with Lenovo and Toyota South Africa Motors, the program seeks to train 57 girls in coding, robotics, and concepts related to the Internet of Things.
Commencing on Monday and concluding on Saturday, the program involves female students in Grades 10 and 11 from 15 disadvantaged schools in the eThekwini District.
Siphesihle Dlamini, a 17-year-old Grade 11 pupil at Phoenix Technical School, expressed her interest in computer science after being inspired by a television series featuring a young woman who defied expectations. She said, “Her experience motivated me to break the boundaries and enter into a field that was known to have been male-dominated. Nothing can stop me if I focus on my vision. And I believe that if I start working hard now, I’ll achieve my goal.”
Ntandoyenkosi Mbhele, a 16-year-old Grade 11 pupil at Vukuzakhe High School in Umlazi, expressed her excitement about participating in the program for the first time. She said, “I am studying Information Technology at school and know the basics of coding. The DUT lecturers are welcoming, and I’m looking forward to joining the institution in the future so I can develop my skills in the STEM career.”
Ebrahim Asmal, a senior lecturer in Information Technology at DUT, emphasized that the program aims to encourage more girls to enter the STEM field. He stated, “We all know that 60% of all jobs by 2030 will be replaced by robots. This means millions of jobs will be created, and they will require technology skills.”
Repurposed article originally published in IOL.