Mastercard program – Girls4Tech, reaches a million girls (APAC highlights)
By Edil Corneille
Mastercard announced today its successful initial milestone goal of educating one million girls under its signature STEM education program – Girls4Tech. Ahead of UNICEF’s International Day of the Girl Child on October 11, Mastercard has set a new goal for the Girls4Tech program to reach 5 million girls globally by 2025.
In 2014, Mastercard launched Girls4Tech to offer activities and curriculum built on global science and math standards, incorporating the payments technology company’s expertise in technology and innovation.
The program’s aim is to enable kids to discover a range of STEM careers namely fraud detective, data scientist, and software engineer. Starting as hands-on, in-person sessions run by over 4,600 Mastercard employee volunteers over six years, the program has since expanded into new topics such as artificial intelligence and cybersecurity and enhanced access to its STEM curriculum through a digital learning experience, Girls4Tech Connect, which has been translated into eight languages.
Julienne Loh, Executive Vice President, Enterprise Partnerships, Asia Pacific, Mastercard said, “When there’s equal gender representation in the workforce, companies automatically build better products, services and create better technology. The big stumbling block to achieving this balance? There’s a growing gender gap in STEM careers…”
Asia Pacific highlights
Mastercard has created customised Girls4Tech curricula with partners including Be Better China, Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE), American India Foundation (AIF), The R&A and YCAB in Indonesia, Arus in Malaysia, Scholastic, Major League Baseball, among others.
- India: Supported by the Mastercard Impact Fund, Mastercard and the American India Foundation (AIF) will train 1,200 teachers in 350 villages and five cities. The program will reach 100,000 girls, ages 8-14, across 475 schools over the next 12 months, starting in September 2020. Between 2019-2020, over 200 Mastercard employee volunteers hosted 15 Girls4Tech events across its Pune, Vadodara, and Gurugram offices, as well as 2 India-wide virtual sessions (due to COVID-19) reaching more than 600 girls aged between 8-12.
- China: Through a partnership with NFTE, in 2015, Mastercard created a customised Girls4Tech classroom curriculum for Be Better to deploy in 12 markets in mainland China. Between 2016–2019, Be Better reached more than 80,000 Chinese girls, ages 8-12.
- Indonesia: YCAB Foundation, Ministry of ICT, and the Ministry of Education partnered through the Mastercard Impact Fund to launch an online gamified version of Girls4Tech in September 2020. The goal is to train 60,000 Indonesian girls across 228 schools, as part of the flagship Mastercard Academy 2.0 skilling initiative.
- Singapore: 21,900 girls reached through workshops and initiatives developed in partnership with schools and local non-profits for children/ youth
- Malaysia: An online Girls4Tech program has been created in Malay for the government’s education platform, Digital Education Learning Initiative Malaysia (DELIMa). The goal is to reach 5,000 girls by May 2021.
- Australia: Mastercard employee volunteers from the Brisbane office have taken the program on the road to 11 schools between 2017-2020, reaching 1,028 girls.
Susan Warner, Vice President of Community Engagement and Founder of Mastercard’s Girls4Tech program said, “Mastercard’s goal is to build foundational STEM knowledge and develop critical 21st century skills girls need for their studies and career success. This program sparks their curiosity in STEM and teaches them real-world applications of those skills.”
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