Thursday 30 May, 2024

The Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT), through its Gender Equality and Social Inclusion (GESI) Desk, participated at  the 2024 PNG Girls and Women in ICT Day, held at the Papua New Guinea University of Technology from 24– 26  May, 2024

The event, organized by the National ICT Authority and PNG Unitech, took place at the University of Technology (Unitech) Campus in Lae, with a clear focus on the critical need for strong female role models in ICT and the sciences.

International Girls in ICT Day is celebrated every fourth Thursday of April. This year’s theme, “Leadership,” brought together influential women leaders from government, international organizations, and development partners to inspire and empower young female students, demonstrating that they too can make significant contributions to the ICT sector.

Ms. Marrian Rema, the DICT GESI Manager, emphasized the department’s commitment to encouraging young women to pursue education and careers in ICT and  science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields.

 “Our participation aims to inspire and engage young women to pursue ICT and STEM education,” Ms. Rema stated.

 She highlighted the department’s efforts to integrate GESI into its business processes, including the establishment of an internal policy to ensure equal representation in job positions.

“DICT has a total of 105 employees, 41 of whom are women, with roles extending up to the executive manager level,” Ms. Rema noted. She also stressed the importance of consistent awareness efforts beyond Port Moresby to increase visibility on ICT scholarships, internships, and training opportunities.

Ms Rema shared the story of Dr. Yalinu Poya, a distinguished PNG scientist who has achieved international acclaim as a Professor at London University.

“Dr. Poya’s inspiring journey, shows the importance of perseverance and dedication in achieving success in the sciences,” Ms Rema highlighted.

Ms. Beverly Manoa from DICT also captivated the audience by explaining her role as a Cybersecurity Analyst, providing a basic walk through into the field and encouraging the bulk of the young girls and women present to consider careers in cybersecurity and ICT.

The event saw enthusiastic participation from major secondary schools in Lae, including Busu Secondary, Bugandi Secondary, and Bumayong Secondary, as well as a large number of female students from Unitech.

The 2024 PNG Girls and Women in ICT Day was an achievement in terms of fostering leadership and empowerment among young women, showing that with the right support, inspiration, and a clear pathway  they too can excel in ICT and STEM fields, overall, contributing to the nation’s development.

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