Did you know that:
Less than 3% of black women are in STEM.
12.2% of board members are women in the tech industry.
The percentage of women with STEM degrees has dropped from 25% to 24%.
Why STEM education?
Time and time again, we have seen education in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics prove to be more relevant in the society we live in because as the world evolves, it needs critical thinkers who will make our ways of living much easier as well as solve challenges that we face. In other words, STEM education actualizes innovative thinking bringing to life solutions to the many problems we face in the world.
The importance of STEM education for economies
The economy of a country would rise when all members of the society make an effective contribution to it. STEM education is helping by providing abundant resources for nations to become self-reliant, and this will boost the economy's growth. STEM workers are one of the most paid staff in the World. In the U.S and other countries, employees in STEM are paid higher than in other fields. Women earning a high income can support their families which in turn reduces the dependency ratio on the economy. To buttress the point, The tech industry will face nearly a 4.3 million human capital deficit by 2030, costing nearly $449.7 Billion in unrealized revenue globally. Women represent one of the largest pools of untapped labor therefore women need to be empowered enough to take up careers in STEM to close this gap and boost economies.
Ways to support black women in STEM
There are several ways to support women in STEM fields. However, I will emphasize four ways to support women in STEM.
Individuals who want to support women in STEM can take up personal advocacy for the course. They can use their social media platforms to speak up and support women in STEM fields. This will give room to more people to also encourage more women to join STEM fields
Mentoring is important to make sure that young women in STEM get the right advice to follow their career paths and not give up. Mentoring also allows mentees to have a support system, it builds their confidence and increases their awareness of the field that they are in. Mentorships given to young women in STEM sheds light on their career paths. Yielding Accomplished African Women through its talent accelerator program dubbed "Our Girls Our Future", gives young women the opportunity to be mentored by people in the field.
3. Donating to organizations that support women in STEM
Organizations such as Yielding Accomplished African Women go out of their way to support women, especially black college women in STEM. These organizations offer support to women to block the leakage of women leaving STEM fields. For Yielding Accomplished African Women, scholarship schemes are in place to make sure that black college women have the needed financial support to complete their academic work and also get the right certifications to ensure career progression.
Sponsorship comes in many forms, but here I wish to emphasize sponsorship at the workplace. Statistics have it that 12.2% of board members are women in the tech industry meaning there are few women leaders making decisions in industries that are revolutionizing the world and this will continue to increase the inequality gap. Women in STEM careers must be sponsored to leadership positions that will give more opportunities to black women, to have a seat at the table.
Women have only 30% representation in STEM careers and black women have less, that is why various communities have been pushing and hoping to get more women in STEM. Yielding Accomplished African Women is relentless in empowering black college women to reach their full potential by empowering them with the resources and opportunities to do so. We are building the largest talent pipeline of black women in STEM. Would you like to support more black college women in STEM? Click on the link below to join us.