Girls urged to develop confidence in maths, science
As part of activities to mark the International Day of the Girl Child, a university lecturer has called on girls to pursue a career in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
Rabia Salihu Sa’id of the department of Physics, Bayero University Kano and an active citizen’s facilitator of the British Council Nigeria, said it is important to get more girls into STEM because the benefits derived from its advancement is not limited to one gender.
Sa’id said: “Scientific solutions to problems that bedevil the world in medicine, in the impacts of technology, in health care, in engineering, require input from both men and women.”
“More girls in science will mean that the solutions that science provides are not just tailored to the needs of a single gender.” She opined that girls lack confidence in pursing careers in such fields especially in the northern part of the country, saying, the road to the pursuit of an academic degree in STEM is lined with obstacles that the young girls will have to overcome.
She identified duration of academic degree in STEM which is within 4-5 years and peer group pressure as some of the factors working against more girls’ enrollment in the STEM.
According to the don, mentoring process for the young girls, showcasing role models, scholarships and fund opportunities as well as awards, recognition and fellowships will go a long way in helping the girls discover their ability and know they can do it.
She further said, “The input from the young girls on what will motivate them more needs to be sought. This could be done by organizing an interactive programme for the young girls in STEM.”