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Poly, MUST steer girls in STEM courses

News   Chapter Banda   May 13, 2019
PIC: Delegates with the students after the workshop
The Malawi Polytechnic and Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST) on Friday, May 10, conducted an outreach to secondary school female students at Saint Lawrence Girls Secondary School in Chikwawa.

The program was part of the initiative under the Malawi chapter of Women in Engineering (WomEng), whose primary goal is to empower young girls to pursue courses in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM). 

According to the WomEng Malawi programme coordinator, Faith Mzandu, the event was organised to motivate and encourage the students to develop a passion and love for mathematics and other science subjects while in secondary school.

“In many cases so far, we have witnessed an acute domination of men in various fields of engineering skills. However, following the establishment of this initiative, expectations are high that the present female engineers may act as a benchmark to persuade young girls to pursue various courses under STEM”, Mzandu explained.

One of the speakers during the event, a Polytechnic fourth year student of Geological Engineering, Omega Chirwa said the program was fruitful as many girls were willing   to know more about STEM programmes that are offered by various universities in Malawi.

“We saw many girls during the STEM awareness initiative trying to redefine themselves based on what they learnt and from various motivational speeches. Furthermore, my fellow girls were curious enough and had the guts to ask questions on this brilliant topic issue of the day. In addition, it is heart-warming to be part of opening a girl-child’s mind,” Chirwa said.

Chipping in, ST Lawrence Girls Secondary School teacher, Christopher Moyo said the program is an eye opener to the girl-student.

 Moyo further said such kind of initiatives are rare in some parts of country and commended WomEng Malawi for choosing his school to host it.

A form-two student from Chikwawa Secondary, Phalyce Julius said she has been inspired to study Biomedical Engineering so that she could develop machines that will be used in hospitals across the country.

During the event students from ST Michaels, ST Lawrence Girls, Chikwawa, Mthumba, and Dzumila secondary schools had a chance to learn more about STEM programmes from both the staff and students from Polytechnic and MUST. 

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