Ghana’s Communications Minister, Ursula Owusu Ekuful, on Saturday continued her push for girls in Ghana’s educational institutions to be passionate and take advantage of the opportunities that Information, Communications and technology (ICT) offers people, globally.
“There is no excuse, whatever your field of study, to be left out in this wave of technological advancements,” Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said at the 73RD Speech and Prize Giving Day of Aburi Girls’ Senior High School, themed: ‘Raising Young Women with integrity and Technology for Societal Transformation in the 21ST Century and Beyond’.
She added, “The days are long gone when programming was a thing for computer students and tech “gurus”. Take advantage of this ICT lab – every one of you young ladies and I sincerely hope you will do so. Set high standards and targets and challenge yourself to work beyond your comfort zone. Remain the promising light and keep God as King.”
Describing the theme of the occasion as “perfect” Mrs Owusu-Ekuful stated spoke of the great demand for game changers and technological innovators to improve individual lives, homes, societies and the world at large.
“It is an indubitable fact that transformational change in this our 21st century has technology to thank and is an integral tool to the fourth industrial revolution – for my young ladies yet to explore the world of technology, this is the transformation of technology and of data for our daily lives; and I used “yet” because you must already be aware of how much the world relies on technology and if not, you will soon find out,” she said.
Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said many a time, she is filled with optimism when she hears the increasing numbers of young ladies in the area of science, technology, engineering, STEM subjects, because in the past, the statistics have been low on the enrollment of girls in ICT.
Lately, she stated many young women such as you are honing their skills in STEM and ICT and “I have been delighted to meet some of them.”
“There is a growing interest in STEM subjects and many efforts by the government and civil society actors are being made to disabuse the minds of young girls from believing that STEM subjects are difficult and reserved mainly for boys,” she stated.
According to her, the government, under the leadership of Nana Addo Danquah Akufo Addo through the Ministry of Education, has as part of its educational reforms, put in place policies and programmes to strengthen and upscale the study of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), beginning from the basic level.
The Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology and Innovation, she further noted have been charged with this responsibility and are expected to enrol more science students in the country’s educational system, so as to achieve an initial target of 60% science students in tertiary institutions.
“The NPP government believes that these policies will eventually provide benefits to transform our educational systems,” she stated.