Governments Supporting Women in Science
Hungary is a very science oriented country. It is also a family-values oriented nation putting special emphasis on women, both in the workplace/career and in the home.
The Hungarian Government and Higher Education has always supported and encouraged women to choose science as a profession and the number of women scientists currently working in the private or public sector is increasing.
The South African Government has a similar approach and has dispatched significant resources to boost young girls in cities and rural areas alike to take S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) subjects seriously and to unleash their talents and potential in this field.
As you see, our governments think alike.
It is in this spirit that the Hungarian Government sponsored the The Fourth International Day of Women and Girls in Science Forum held in February 2019.
The purpose of this Forum is to cross-fertilize and harness the strategies, expertise and resources across the broadest spectrum of policy-makers, professionals, civil society and the private sector to move investment in women in science for inclusive green growth into the mainstream discourse, and to identify implementation gaps and co-create action plans.
It is anticipated that this will spark sustained public demand for lasting political action within the United Nations Intergovernmental processes and other international, regional and national fora.
Getting excited about STEM
Having spoken to many hundreds of students in the past years, I believe that the best way to encourage STEM education is by showing its diversity when it comes to careers, and by demonstrating its practical applications to get girls and boys alike excited about STEM.
With sorely needed forward-thinking exhibitions like MyFuture4.0 held in May 2019 in Johannesburg, schoolgirls (and boys) were exposed to practical, spectacular science and got a glimpse of what is in store for the future.
As an exhibitor I observed that schoolkids of all ages were in awe when they saw the many different ways in which technology will touch and transform our lives in the decades to come. For some, it is scary, for others, it is inspiring, but either way, after visiting MyFuture4.0, I am sure that everyone left with valuable food for thought and a new excitement about STEM.
Why would anyone take on these rather difficult subjects?
With the rise of Artificial Intelligence, Big Data, automation, virtual reality, blockchains and other major trends prevailing nowadays, studies in S.T.E.M could be the key to “future proofing” yourself. With and understanding that technology will inevitably keep on taking over mundane, monotonous or physically demanding jobs from humans, moving slowly towards more sophisticated functions, it is indeed difficult to plan a career 10 or even 5 years down the line.
Life long learning and adaptability will define the successful people of tomorrow, as the development of technology will much faster than we can imagine today.
While some of the jobs of the future might not exist today, and thus are impossible to fully prepare for, many scientific and business sources identify the most likely skills that will be needed for the 4th Industrial Revolution, including, but not limited to:
- Complex Problem Solving
- Critical (Analytical) Thinking
- People Skills and Empathy
- Interdisciplinary Knowledge
You can identify for yourself which of the above stem from S.T.E.M. 🙂
So, girls, young ladies out there, if you have a knack for science, technology, engineering or maths (or anything along those lines), I urge you to get on board and take the ride, because this train is going fast and going far.
Further Your Studies in STEM
We are living in a day and age where there have never been so many opportunities to study. Offline, online, in South Africa or abroad: the supply of great educational programmes is abundant. If you are committed to broadening your horizons and experiencing other cultures as well, the number of international scholarships for South African students is absolutely amazing, if you are willing to move out of your comfort zone and actively look for them and research your options.
Fully financed university scholarships, like the Stipendium Hungaricum Hungarian Government Programme are within an arm`s reach and could change your life and career prospects forever.
Girls, ladies, these are not opportunities to be ignored or missed!
If you would like to look at your options in studying STEM at one of Hungary`s top universities, explore University of Pécs or University of Debrecen. You can also apply to our full university scholarship, the Stipendium Hungaricum from December.