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Ministry of Women and Child Development in Partnership with UNICEF holds NariShakti Varta on STEM and Financial Literacy For Young Women

  • Published
    4th Mar, 2022
Context

Recently, as a part of the Ministry of Women and Child Development’s ‘Iconic Week’ celebrating the International Women’s Day under the ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, UNICEF YuWaah facilitated the #NaariShakti conversation, on ‘STEM and Financial Literacy for Young Women’.

About

About STEM:

  • The STEM acronym was introduced in 2001 in the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF).
  • The idea to promote STEM education in India has been supported by the National Council for Science and Technology Communication along with the Department of Science and Technology, GOI.
  • It is a curriculum that promotes the idea of educating students in disciplines such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
  • This aims at establishing a robust platform for innovation for the next generation.
  • India is one of the countries that produce the highest number of scientists and engineers, the growth of STEM has picked up significantly over the last few years.
  • Under Article 51A of the Constitution of India, it is a duty of every citizen of India to develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform.
  • Objective
  • The conference intended to establish a flexible working environment for women along with the need for socio-cultural changes.
  • To achieve gender parityin the field of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
  • Significance
  • A robust STEM education creates critical thinkers, problem-solvers, and next-generation innovators.
  • According to the National Science Foundation, it is predicted that 80% of the jobs created in the next decade will require some form of math and science skills.

Participation of Women in STEM:

  • About 43% of STEM graduates in Indiaare women, which are the highest in the world, but their share in STEM jobs in India is a mere 14%.
  • The under-representation of women in STEM majors is common globally, but India presents a particularly curious case.
  • Here, even though the number of women enrolling in STEM programmes has been increasing year on year, the rising education levels aren't translating into employability or jobs.  
  • As per the All India Survey on Higher Education (AISHE) 2018-19, just 3% of women enroll in PhD in science and only 6% opt for a PhD in Engineering and Technology.
  • This 'leaky pipeline' in STEM means that fewer women end up reaching higher levels to be selected as professional scientists later.

About UNICEF’s YuWaah:

  • YuWaah is a multi-stakeholder platform that aims to prepare young people to transition from education and learning to productive work and active citizenship.
  • It was formed by UNICEF, together with public and private sector partners, UN Agencies, civil society organisations, foundations and young people as the Generation Unlimited (GenU) partnership in India.
  • By 2030, in India YuWaah aims to:
  • Build pathways to aspirational socio-economic opportunities for 100 million young people.
  • Facilitate 200 million young people to gain relevant skills for productive lives and the future of work.
  • Partner with 300 million young people as change makers and create spaces for developing their leadership.
  • It was launched in 2019.
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