Cisco hosted its annual Girls Power Tech event at its Dubai office, where more than 60 female students from several schools had the opportunity to interact with technology professionals, Cisco executives, other women role models and peers. Aligned with the UN’s global Girls in ICT Day, Cisco’s Girls Power Tech is held annually and offers a special learning opportunity for female students to connect with Cisco and other mentors on-site at Cisco offices around the world.
Cisco’s Girls Power Tech is a global mentoring initiative that empowers and encourages girls and young women to consider educational and career paths in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) and technology. The UAE version of the event included a number of engaging activities, including inspirational talks by prominent women innovators and guest speakers, a morning chat session with senior Cisco executives, in addition to an Internet of Things (IoT) challenge and a speed mentoring session.
The activity-packed day featured inspirational presentations by Azza Al Mughairy, a prominent Emirati radio and TV host and role model, who spoke on cyberbullying, and Fatima Al Kaabi, the UAE’s youngest inventor and recipient of UAE Pioneers Award, who shared her experiences on innovation and her inspiring journey with the aspiring girls. Ayesha Zainal, Director of Infrastructure Process Development and Performance at du, also spoke on the evolution of telecommunications and what technology could lead to in the future.
Girls Power Tech is not just a visit to Cisco’s offices, but a chance for students to experience the power of Cisco’s digital innovations first-hand, and gain insights into topics such as IoT and innovation, as well as the importance of online privacy and the responsible use of technology. Sponsored by Samsung and du, this year’s edition included speed mentoring sessions, where students directly interacted with mentors, and an IoT challenge in which groups of students presented their original ideas on potential use cases.
Similar events are taking place across more than 100 Cisco offices worldwide, reaching out to more than 5,000 young ladies and involving nearly 2,000 Cisco employee volunteers.