bmobile supports International Girls in ICT Day
60 girls from the Russell Latapy, Success/Laventille and Morvant/Laventille Secondary Schools got a special treat from Bmobile when they met and interacted with Sheldon, a talking beam or robot. The occasion was the launch of the Information Communications Technology (ICT) Event and Mini Expo hosted by CANTO and the Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad & Tobago (TATT) at TATT’s head office in Barataria on April 26th. The ICT event was held in recognition of International Girls in ICT Day to celebrate the ways that women and girls are making an impact in ICT in Trinidad and Tobago and to encourage more girls to pursue a career in ICT.
Marsha Caballero, TSTT’s Vice President Corporate Communications created quite a stir when she transmitted the beginning of her address to the girls from another room using Sheldon. As Caballero spoke to them about the developments in ICT over the years and the many possibilities open to girls in ICT, screams of surprise and excitement from the girls were heard as Sheldon entered their room and moved among them. “Twenty five years ago, the number of IT and technology careers would have been limited to the computer and software industry. Today, the possibilities are definitely endless. Governments in almost every country agree that it is essential for the world’s development and successful future, that girls be encouraged to take an active interest in having a career in technology. As technology continues to develop and disrupt, girls and women have the opportunity to make a difference and be a part of a significant moment in history. As we celebrate International Girls in ICT Day today, my personal hope for you is that a seed will be planted and nourished in you by the inspirational stories of women who have taken extraordinary control of their destiny because of technology.” said Caballero.
Caballero noted that the 2018 theme of International Girls in ICT Day, ‘Expand Horizons, Change Attitudes’, was a fitting theme because it signals the expectation that girls can do exceptional things, once they put their mind to it and challenged the girls to see a future in ICT for themselves. Bmobile was a proud sponsor of the International Girls in ICT Mini Expo and also hosted an interactive booth which was very popular with girls who were able to learn more about Sheldon, telecommunications networks, mobile applications and job opportunities. To cap things there was a dance-off competition using Bmobile’s ‘Just Dance’ virtual app and many giveaways from Bmobile.
Ahzariah Clarke and Shinice Myers, form 3 students at the Success Laventille Secondary School, really enjoyed the event. Clarke said “Today was really interesting. I learnt a lot about what ICT is and the various types of jobs that are available. I’m really glad I came.” Myers was really impressed with Sheldon. “This is the first time I saw a robot like that in Trinidad and Tobago. It was really exciting. I learnt that the programme that controls Sheldon runs on a WiFi network and that it can be controlled from anywhere that has an internet and WiFi connection. The things I heard and saw today will make me think about a career in ICT.”
Ria Karim developed the D’Junction mobile app which provides carnival band tracking and information on events using a fast and reliable platform sponsored and powered by Bmobile’s 4G LTE mobile network. Karim emphasized to the girls that her academic background is not in ICT, yet she was able to develop an ICT product by finding the right technical resources to work with her. “You don’t have to know how to do coding. You too can work in ICT. What you need to focus on is that ICT is something that can be used to solve problems and create opportunities. It is how you look at the big picture and this is my story.”
Teresa Wankin, CANTO’s Secretary General explained that the Mini Expo will be held over 2 days and targeted the underserved schools within the Port of Spain and Environs Education District to maximize their exposure to as many opportunities as possible and help level the playing field. “Our job today is to encourage you to paint the best picture of your life. Paint a picture of what you want to be, own it and never stop painting.” she said. Sherry Mc Millan, TATT’s Chief Executive Officer (Ag.) shared that with over 50% of their staff and 4 out of 6 executive officers being female, the ‘glass ceiling’ was broken at TATT. She noted however that internationally only 24 out of every 1,000 female graduates are in ICT and only 6 end up working in ICT. “This is why International Girls in ICT Day is celebrated every year to focus on developing girls in ICT.”