There still exists a significant Gender Gap in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics in Rwanda, a problem that has been attributed to among other things, a retrogressive mindset and misconceptions about sciences.
This was highlighted at a meeting for Women in Science, held in Kigali today, where Rwandan women who had made outstanding achievements in the science world were awarded.
Rwanda has strived to leverage the potential of science technology and innovation in a bid to position herself as a knowledge-based economy, while at the same time using science and technology to address social economic challenges.
However, demystifying Science and making it attractive mostly to young women has been a challenge, with studies showing that female researchers account for less than 30% of all researchers.
According to Acting Executive Secretary of the National Council for Science and Technology Felly Migambi Kalisa, this Gender Gap in the science field, is a mindset problem.
Nathalie Munyampenda, the Managing Director at the NEXT EINSTEIN FORUM-Rwanda, said that higher learning institutions have to find ways of not only attracting women to the science field but also retaining them.
Studies show that many of the innovations by scientists hardly leave the labs for the market place. NATHALIE said that effort is required to expedite the lab to market process.
Stakeholders in the science field also called upon the private sector to offer their expertise to young learners to help them relate science to real life.
The Women in Science Breakfast meeting which was held in Kigali, on Thursday, is part of the AFRICA SCIENCE WEEK which began on the 4th of November and will end on the 10th of this month. At the event, different categories of women including Alice Ikuzwe, the brains behind the RWANDA ASSOCIATION OF WOMEN IN SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING (RAWISE) received awards for their outstanding performance in various science fields.
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