Over the past seven months, the TechWomen community — our Emerging Leaders, fellows, mentors and host companies — have shown that connection, mentorship and learning can thrive in a virtual setting. They’ve pushed through long distances and the challenges of balancing work and family life, proving that exchange transcends borders and time zones.
Each year the TechWomen program has the opportunity to continue knowledge-sharing and deepen exchange through delegation trips. This year, we are excited to announce our first-ever virtual delegations to two regions IIE has not had the opportunity to visit: the Palestinian Territories and Cameroon!
Virtual vs. in-person
The mission of this year’s delegations remains the same as ever: to strengthen an international network of women in STEM fields, creating partnership and exchange between the United States and TechWomen program countries. A cornerstone of the TechWomen program, delegations serve a vital role in growing and sustaining the TechWomen network, allowing delegates from the United States to learn about the STEM ecosystem and encourage women and girls to pursue careers in STEM fields.
This year, our virtual delegations will take place over the course of a month, where small groups of TechWomen mentors will participate in high-impact fellow-led events with the fellows’ communities.
Palestinian Territories: May 2021
The Palestinian Territories have been a part of TechWomen since the program’s inception in 2011; since then, 48 women have participated in the program, returning home ready to mentor others and work to bridge the gender gap in STEM. Fellows are already hard at work creating engaging events for the month of May, where mentors will share their expertise, learn about the tech ecosystem in the region and empower local women and girls through small group activities and engagement. At a STEM learning event, local high school students will hear from leading women in STEM fields who will share about their careers and speak about the many opportunities within STEM. Another event will convene women in technology to talk about the specific issues women in leadership face, sharing best practices and giving advice on succeeding in male-dominated fields. TechWomen mentors will also have an opportunity to learn about innovation and entrepreneurship in the region at an event with local women entrepreneurs, where all participants will share their knowledge, challenges and successes.
Cameroon: June 2021
Cameroon joined the TechWomen program in 2013; since then, 35 women have participated in TechWomen and gone on to innovate and establish initiatives that advance the world of STEM and empower their communities. The Cameroonian fellows have been working together to plan interactive events that inspire girls and allow both fellows and mentors to share their career stories with women and girls. At a mentorship event, TechWomen mentors and fellows will share about their careers with young girls, teaching them about possibilities within STEM. The fellows also hope to hold an event with school children that will allow them to learn about robotics, computing and design thinking through hands-on learning. At a session with university students, the fellows and mentors will explore cybersecurity, building an online brand and networking in a COVID-19 world through small group sessions.
#twimpact, from anywhere
Fellows and mentors are energized and ready for an impactful month in the Palestinian Territories and Cameroon. We look forward to sharing out their sessions, workshops and activities on the TechWomen blog, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, where we’ll provide daily updates from the virtual delegations.
See you soon for #twpt and #twcameroon!