Participants from the 12th cohort of Women In Digital skills and Rotary Girls Coding Project Cohort 4 went on a field trip to Design and Technology Institute (DTI) to attend a gender programme organized by the institute.
The programme themed “DTI Gender Call For Action, Wiring females for jobs in TVET’’ purpose was to make Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) attractive to girls and to improve their livelihood. DTI is a privately accredited Technical and Vocational Education and Training Institute (TVET) in Ghana. It is a centre of excellence for youth job creation through specialized skills development in TVET. Currently, DTI recruits and trains youth between the ages of 16 to 27 years in welding and fabrication. To grace, the event was the host, Madam Constance Swaniker( Founder of DTI), CEO of Soronko Academy, Mrs Regina Honu, Engineer Madina Seidu Adams, Mrs Sarah Adu -Wardi(CTVET), students from GTL and CAMFED just to mention a few.
Ms Swaniker welcomed the gathering to the institute and spoke on Wiring Females for jobs in TVET, Engineer Madina spoke on TVET Education, improving the livelihood of women and shared her story of how she got to where she was today. A student from Soronko Academy, Justina Shiamatey asked the question of how as a young individual, she could access opportunities if her surroundings limited her. The Engineer urged her to take advantage of the internet and that one would be surprised as to the level of information you could get from the internet. To speak after was Mrs Sara Adu-Wardi, a representative from TVET. She spoke on how the government was contributing to the TVET space in Ghana.
As the final keynote speaker for the day, Mrs Honu started off her speech with an activity. She asked the audience to think of their “power pose”, a phrase she explained as a position you stand that makes you feel powerful. Some stood with their hands on their waist with legs wide apart whiles imitated the various superhero poses. She shared her story of how she started her journey and the discouragements she encountered along the line. Mrs Regina shared her Milo Marathon experience and how she persevered to finish her race. She encouraged students to keep pushing for their goals because discouragement would always come. Being a minority in a male-dominated space, she’s had to toughen up so as not to be pushed aside. Mrs Honu touched on body language, challenging themselves, teamwork, empathy, a business plan, standing out and confidence building. She concluded by urging the students to work hard towards their dreams, stand out wherever they find themselves and more opportunities would be opened up to them. She asked them to advance their skills and take advantage of all the skills that would be presented to them. She ended by saying, “nothing is impossible, the only limit is the limit you give yourself”.
After Mrs Honu’s, speech room was given to two students to share what they learned from the session. One was Gloria from DTI and the other was Haydee Lenga, from the Rotary class. Haydee had learned that “ it didn’t matter if others went ahead, what matters is that she keeps pushing towards her dreams”.
After the first session of the event, the students from Soronko Academy and invited guests participated in the DTI experiential learning for girls. This session allowed the students to interact with the WEL Ladies of DTI to share their workplace experiences. They also had the opportunity to experience first-hand welding fabrication. There was a networking and lunch session right after to close the program.