Tuesday 18 February, 2020

Youth Can Do IT launches mentorship program for girls in technology

It really was a case of “Who Run the World? GIRLS!” when Youth Can Do I.T. (YCDI) launched its inaugural Women in IT Mentorship Program last week, in partnership with Seprod Foundation.

The launch in Kingston coincided with International Girls in ICT Day, which was celebrated around the world on April 26.

Under the program, 31 female high school and university students will be paired with professional women in the IT space for an exciting year-long learning experience. Most of them came to The Great House in Half Way Tree last Thursday to meet their mentors for the first time.

“We wanted to create a space and a platform for girls to be exposed to, explore and experiment all that they can in the tech space, and have a support system and a mentor to help them along the way,” explained Lianne McNaughton, founder of YCDI.


“What makes this program different is that we’re not just pairing the mentees with a mentor and then leaving them to their devices.  We’re also providing workshops for them to acquire technical skills, strength empowerment sessions and networking opportunities.”

The mentors selected hold leading roles and have wide-ranging expertise. They include CEOs, CIOs and specialists in cyber security, social media management and graphic design.

Over the next four months, YCDI will engage the mentees in tech workshops and explore topics spanning leadership and web development in preparation for conferences in September - including the Grace Hopper Women in Computing Conference, which a select few mentees will have the opportunity to attend.

They will end the year with a ceremony on International Women’s Day on March 8 2019.


Seprod Foundation was the title sponsor for the launch and Chairman Melanie Subratie said: “I have seen the work Lianne did last year and I am a big fan of her program and that’s why I absolutely had to support it.”

Although applications are closed, you can stay in touch with YCDI and look out for enrollment to begin again in March 2019. To learn more about YCDI, follow its progress on social media at @youthcandoit on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook. If you’re interested in being a sponsor, please get in touch.

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