The number of girls pursuing science and engineering studies is still low in comparison to that of boys. The Rwandan Association for Women In Science and Engineering (RAWISE) aims to increase women scientists’ participation in decision making and development of Rwanda, therefore, the association carries out outreaches in order to reach out and encourage young women in pursuing studies in STEM.
The first outreach of RAWISE took place at ENDP Karubanda, August 2016, which is an all-girls high school. During this outreach, the association’s members met with young girls studying in upper level sections in Sciences such as, Maths-Chemistry-Biology (MCB), Maths-Physics-Biology (MPB) and History-Economy-Geography (HEG).
During the outreach, the members discussed with these young girls, who are in their last years of high school, about what to expect later, career orientation, sciences in everyday life, the necessity of a considerable number women scientists and engineers as decision makers and the impact of that gap in our everyday life, etc., through members’ presentations. After the presentations, the students gathered in groups around one member of their choice, to ask questions, share their concerns, ask for advices and they had an opportunity to keep contact with the members for further mentorship.
This very interactive discussion was a success and a great experience for both RAWISE and the young girls of ENDP Karubanda leaving a clearer vision to challenges to be faced in order to achieve our goal.