February 1, 2014
U.S. Department of State – Office of the Spokesperson
Fusing technology with efforts to empower women and girls, the U.S. Department of State announced that a delegation of 30 TechWomen mentors from the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley will meet in Rwanda from February 2-7 to collaborate and connect through workshops and visits with local organizations. An innovative public-private partnership, TechWomen pairs emerging women in technology from Africa and the Middle East with American women mentors from the greater Silicon Valley area.
Since its inaugural program in fall 2011, TechWomen has brought more than 300 women from Africa, the Middle East, and the United States together for month-long mentorships. Last year, TechWomen expanded to include emerging women in the tech sector from Sub-Saharan African countries. Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Evan Ryan will join the TechWomen to kick off this first meeting in Sub-Saharan Africa.
The U.S. TechWomen mentors traveling to Rwanda represent 23 leading companies in Silicon Valley and the Greater San Francisco Bay Area including: Blackberry, Calix, Citrix, Cisco, EMC, Ericsson, Fairrer Samani Group Ventures, Families Without Borders, Genentech, Intel Corporation, Juniper Networks, Katy Dickinson Consulting, Law Offices of Patricia Bovan, NestGSV, Nisum Technologies, Salesforce.com, Santa Clara University, Sf.citi, Shakour Marketing, Sun Run, Symantec, and Twitter.
In Rwanda, TechWomen delegation will meet with non-profits, innovation centers, and girls’ schools that focus on expanding technology networks and careers for women and girls in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields. They will also meet with Rwandan Minister of Youth and ICT Jean Philbert Nsengimana, visit the University of Rwanda’s College of Science and Technology, and attend a Science and Technology fair for secondary school students hosted by the U.S. Embassy Kigali.
TechWomen is an initiative of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA). It is managed by the Center for Women’s Leadership Initiatives (CWLI) at the Institute of International Education ® (IIE).