Cecilia talks about the challenges she faces as a women techie in Sierra Leone, and the important role that iDT Labs plays by providing space for women to explore technology and their potential.
Computer science has become an opportunity to influence the future of society and play a positive role in shaping the role of technology in addressing global challenges. Yet vastly more men than women are stepping through it.
As a woman in Sierra Leone, my experience in this course has been challenging. I am one of the few women pursuing a B.Sc in computer application in my country Sierra Leone. It has been my dream to become a programmer, doing apps, developing computer software for organizations, and exploring new tech solutions for social progress.
I have been faced with so many obstacles, such as lack of mentorship, because in my society women have historically chosen yet fulfilling jobs like teaching, accounting, journalism, etc., whereas male counterparts, sometimes considered family providers, choose high-paying careers like computer science and engineering. So based on such philosophy it has been difficult to ascertain my profession as a computer programmer.
This is not just a Sierra Leone or Africa’s problem but a global one.
I am currently working as an intern with iDT Labs, managed by young driven intellectuals who have given me some hope and confidence to work as a team. They have given me a room to discover so much in coding, developing programs, developing and maintaining software systems. Also I have been given a great way of learning and practicing the real time principles of software development. I can say iDT Labs has taken my career to new heights. They are the mentor I was lacking.