International Burch University today marked the ”International Day of Women and Girls in Science and Technology”. Through the panels ”Women and Girls in Technology” and ”Women and Girls in Science”, women from BiH who have built careers and who build careers and in a special way contribute to the development of science and technology in BiH, have passed on their experiences to high school and university female students, thus motivating them to pursue careers in science and technology.
Participants of the panel ”Women and Girls in Technology” were Nadja Telalagic on behalf of Microsoft BH, Zerina Mandzo on behalf of the IT Girls initiative, Latifa Imamovic from Klika company, Jasna Nuhic, Master of Multidisciplinary Research in Experimental Sciences, Elma Kapur-Basic from MIBO Communications company. The panel moderator was Assist. Prof. Dr. Zerina Masetic, Head of the Information Technology Department at Burch University.
Participants of the panel ”Women and Girls in Science” were Assist. Prof. Dr. Meliha Salek, Assist. Prof. Dr. Lejla Gurbeta Pokvic from Verlab laboratory, professor and entrepreneur Ilda Kovacevic, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Jasna Hivziefendic from Burch University, Monika Safhauzer geneticist. The panel moderator was Assoc. Prof. Dr. Emina Zejnilovic, Head of the Department of Architecture at Burch University.
Participants discussed problems, but also initiated specific solutions for the advancement of science and technology in BiH. They shared different experiences, good and bad, but underlined that every experience defines and enhances us.
One of the suggested solutions is to create opportunities for girls, high school students and university students to hear and experience, through specific education, workshops about occupations that are closely linked with science and technology.
Also, one of the problems identified is the upbringing of children when we focus them on generally accepted occupations, dividing them into ”male” and ”female.”
Changes start in the family with parents supporting their children and giving them the opportunity to see and experience different activities so that they are aware of what they can be when they grow up.
” Knowledge is the key and the driver of success, no matter what environment you work in and what kind of business you do,” was the message that Assoc. Prof. Dr. Jasna Hivziefendic, Vice-Rector for Teaching at International Burch University, sent to high school students, while the common message sent by the panelists was” Superiority is in Knowledge”.
Education in Science and technology is the first step after deciding on a future profession and therefore International Burch University initiated celebration of International Day of Women and Girls in Science and Technology, in collaboration with partners, having the same goal – to encourage girls to enter the world of science and technology.
The partners of the event are IT Girls – an initiative supported by three UN agencies (UNDP, UNICEF and UN Women), which aims to involve as many girls and women in the ICT area to develop interest in the sector and increase opportunities in choosing future careers and educational directions.
“The fact that Burch University shares our mission makes us happy and we are grateful for the opportunity to question, critique and share our experiences at a higher education institution, striving for the same goal – to strengthen girls and women in their career path and economic independence,” said Zerina Mandzo, a Coordinator of the IT Girls Initiative.
IEEE (BiH branch) is the world’s largest organization that brings together engineers around the world, and is dedicated to the advancement of technology for the benefit of humanity. The organization also has a sub-organization, IEEE – Women in Engineering, which is dedicated to the promotion of female engineers and scientists who aim to encourage girls around the world to become engineers and scientists.
Also, an event partner is Bit Alliance, an association that brings together the largest IT companies in BiH, which aims to develop more opportunities in the IT industry every day, addressing a number of barriers along the way such as a lack of highly skilled employees and poor IT industry infrastructure developed, accompanied by a lack of development initiatives.
In order to achieve full and equal access and participation of women and girls in science and technology and to achieve gender equality, the United Nations General Assembly adopted in 2015 a resolution proclaiming February 11 as the International Day of Women and Girls in Science and Technology.