More Women Needed in Stem Fields – Grange

Photo: Michael Sloley Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange (second left), makes a point to Senior Director of the Bureau of Gender Affairs, Sharon Coburn (right), at the International Women’s Day (IWD) Symposium held on Thursday, March 8 at the National Indoor Sports Centre in Kingston. Head of Delegation for the European Union (EU), Her Excellency Malgorzata Wasilewska (left); and High Commissioner of Canada to Jamaica, Her Excellency Laurie Peters, also joined in the discussion.

Story Highlights

  • Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, is highlighting the need for greater representation of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).
  • “Gender equality in science, technology and business is not simply a matter of fairness, but also gender equity that helps to balance the recruitment of the most talented members of the labour force, irrespective of gender,” she pointed out.
  • She said that “integral participation of girls in these critical subject areas also improves productivity and competitiveness and ultimately supports development”.

Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, is highlighting the need for greater representation of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

She noted that while women have worked for and achieved progress in the areas of equal work, political participation, violence against women and girls, they still have some ground to cover in achieving greater participation in the STEM disciplines.

“Gender equality in science, technology and business is not simply a matter of fairness, but also gender equity that helps to balance the recruitment of the most talented members of the labour force, irrespective of gender,” she pointed out.

She said that “integral participation of girls in these critical subject areas also improves productivity and competitiveness and ultimately supports development”.

Minister Grange was addressing an International Women’s Day (IWD) Symposium on Thursday (March 8), organised by the Bureau of Gender Affairs, at the National Indoor Sports Centre in Kingston.

Under the theme ‘Empowering Women and Girls in Science, Technology and Business’, the symposium aimed to provide opportunities to enhance the aspirations and broaden the understanding of career opportunities in STEM.

Activities throughout the day included empowerment sessions highlighting the importance of increasing female participation in STEM education and careers, and a ‘Girls in STEM Award’ to recognise female students from several high schools for outstanding performance in the subject areas.

There was also a segment focused on female entrepreneurs, and the day’s activities concluded with a concert.

“On this IWD, Jamaican women and girls have a lot to celebrate,” Miss Grange said.

“This symposium, the marches, lectures and other activities taking place across the nation are not only for lobbying for greater advancement of the rights of women and girls but these activities are celebrations of the progress of women and girls in science technology and business,” she added.

Partners in the staging of the symposium included the AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) and the High Commission of Canada in Jamaica.

March 8 is the annual observance of International Women’s Day, which recognises the social, political, economic and cultural achievements of women. The Day is also a call to action for accelerating gender parity.

JIS Social