The Technology sector is not only an important enabler of innovation and economic development – it is also one of the fastest growing industries – directly creating millions of jobs. However, despite numerous conversations about gender diversity in Tech, women are still underrepresented in the industry. The future of the industry however relies on representation as research shows that diverse teams perform better and are more innovative.
While there has been significant improvement in the industry, there needs to be more female representation within the sector to ensure future generations of women are not put off from a career in an industry that is predominantly male dominated. Moving the needle is difficult and requires long standing commitment from industry leaders to close the gender gap by recruiting, hiring, retaining, and promoting more women.
Leading global provider of specialized technical support service, Tek Experts has been instrumental in ensuring equal gender participation in the tech ecosystem. Tek Experts strategically partner with Microsoft, to develop female IT talent in Nigeria through the Microsoft Leap Program. Below, three women from Tek Experts tell their stories about their journey in the industry, and why other women looking to start, switch or nurture a career in tech should go for it.
Bethel Osahon – Technical Support Engineer II
“I am particularly grateful for the opportunity. After my National Youth Corps Service (NYSC), I didn’t know where to look or what to do with my Microbiology degree as opportunities within the field are limited. I applied to the LEAP Apprenticeship Program while I was working as a hairstylist and my fortunes changed the day, I got the call that I had been selected as a program participant. The LEAP program gave me an introduction that helped me kick off a career in Tech and Tek Experts has built on that foundation with multiple learning programs. At the start of the Leap program, I didn’t realise I was starting a career. I thought I was just starting another learning program that would end up with nothing but a certificate. But after the program, I got into Tek Experts and my career has grown. LEAP transformed the trajectory of my life from a random young and passionate woman with only a degree in micro-biology with no possible future, to a promising engineer in Tech who is ready to take on the world. I am glad to be a role model and mentor to younger women looking to pursue their interest and careers in tech. More tech companies should develop unconventional programs such as the Leap as this will increase the pool of female executives in the industry. The presence of role models in leadership positions can make a huge difference in the life of young women; it is more like a demonstration to others that they can succeed in that sphere too.
Grace Anselm, Technical Support Engineer II, Leap Apprenticeship Program Participant
“Before joining the LEAP Apprenticeship Program, I had no knowledge in IT (Information Technology). Over the last one year of completing the program and working as a Technical Support Engineer at Tek Experts, I have progressed my skills and career beyond my wildest imagination. I have gone beyond cloud technology and am now working as a Dev Ops Engineer. It has been a fantastic opportunity for me, and I wish more younger women who are looking for opportunities in Tech can take advantage of the program. I will forever appreciate the fact that I took the time to fill out the call for application. Tek Experts is a learning avenue, the environment is set up to boost learning and progress people’s careers and I can confidently say that I am on my way to becoming a world-class engineer. Tech companies cannot afford to overlook the importance of female contributions as women are clients, customers, decision makers, and end users. The presence of more women in tech will help boost tech-driven innovation and designs for products that more women buy.
Fridaws Salisu, Technical Support Engineer, Leap Apprenticeship Program Participant
“I’ve learned a lot of things. I started out not knowing many technical terms and now today I am a leader within my team, Engineers come to me for guidance. I am very grateful for this opportunity. Gender inclusion in the tech industry creates value through diversity of thought, enhanced problem solving and increased innovation.
Tek Experts has partnered with Microsoft since 2019 to bridge the gender gap in the IT industry through the Microsoft Leap Program. The non-traditional training initiative prepares promising talent for the industry through an immersive 16-week apprenticeship.
This year, forty-five female participants will be immersed in curriculum geared to set them up for success. The program involves four weeks of classroom training in Technical Software Support Engineering and 12 weeks of hands-on project training involving real-life scenarios at Tek Experts offices around the world.
The program will run from April 2022 to July 2022 across Tek Experts locations in Nigeria, Rwanda, and Bulgaria.
Learn more about the Microsoft Leap Apprenticeship Program today.
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