The United States has commenced the training of 300 Nigerian schoolgirls in Osun State as part of its effort to spur them into future careers in computer science, robotics, artificial intelligence and other related fields.
In a statement on Thursday, the U.S. consulate said the 300 girls will receive training on coding, web design, and product creation for six months under the “Osun girls can code” program.
Funded by a public diplomacy grant from the U.S. Consulate General, the project will be implemented by a 2016 Mandela Washington Fellow, Dayo Adeniyi.
The U.S. consulate said the program will also equip the students with all key skills needed to thrive in the corporate world.
“The 300 schoolgirls will receive training on coding, web design, and product creation, all key skills needed in today’s increasingly competitive job market. The goal of encouraging the role of girls and women in STEM fields has been the cornerstone of the technology-learning programs supported by the U.S. Mission in Nigeria,” statement by the U.S. consulate read.
U.S. Consul General Claire Pierangelo at the inauguration of the project said that the capacity building program will foster a supportive community where the young girls can be mentored and share internship opportunities in STEM fields.
The Osun Girls Can Code is one of the initiatives of the U.S. Mission geared towards ensuring gender parity and providing women and girls with opportunities to contribute to creating sustainable and inclusive economic prosperity for Nigeria.
The project will end with a pitch competition to showcase the participants’ achievements, with U.S. Consulate representatives taking part on the panel and the winning schools receiving prizes.
The U.S. government in partnership with the Lagos State Ministry of Education in October completed a five-day training program for teachers in the state.
They were introduced to various aspects of implementing an integrated approach to teaching Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) in the classroom.