On Wednesday, March 11, 2020, The Visiola Foundation’s held its annual end-of-year STEM Leadership and Entrepreneurship for Girls (STEMLEG) inter-school competition.
The 2019 STEMLEG Program sponsored by Aspire Coronation Trust (ACT) Foundation was created to teach 1,000 girls attending under-resourced government secondary schools across the FCT valuable skills to enable them to become employable, and tech entrepreneurs who are able to generate an income, while using their newly acquired technical skills to solve local challenges.
During the year-long program, students were taught computer programming including mobile application development, robotics, which covered the use sensors to measure distance and detect obstacles, detect color, measure light intensity, and measure angles and rotations, and leadership and entrepreneurship.
Students developed Feasibility Studies for their proposed businesses underpinning their mobile apps and robotic prototypes, functional mobile apps, market strategies for their businesses, as well as power point presentations to accompany their pitches.
13 schools competed in the mobile application category while 6 schools competed in robotics track. Schools in the robotics track built a robot that performs surface mining of minerals in Nigeria while schools in the mobile application track built and presented mobile applications that addressed issues in the healthcare, agriculture, transportation and energy sectors of the economy.
In his special address on the need for gender equality in Africa’s tech ecosystem during the closing ceremony, Mr. Tolu Olayinka, CEO, Cinoteck, stated that there is a need to get more women into technology, and the enabling environment needs to be created for them to thrive. The Foundation’s women-focused STEMLEG program is one of the few initiatives that specifically targets girls and plays an important role in bridging the gender gap in the field. . He further noted that the Visiola Foundation has contributed immensely to help increase the number of women pursuing technology careers which will help to bring about greater innovation and digital inclusion for the economy.
Relive the closing ceremony and inter-school competition of the competition in the short video below.
Below are quotes from some of the students at the competition.
My team built an application that can be used to detect eye defects. We plan to further develop this solution by using machine learning to improve its accuracy. Now, I want to learn Machine Learning”. – Ummi (14)
“We applied technology to create a mobile application called “Ladies Voice” to enable women are to report and discuss sexual abuse.” -Team Emerald