New program draws Egyptian women to tech

29 September 2017

Computing

An Egyptian tech school is shattering stereotyping in the tech industry by enabling more women to learn programming, coding and elements of building websites.

AlMakinah, a Cairo-based tech school, has initiated a new program exclusively for women titled “The Women in Tech Track” with the aim of addressing the imbalances in the gender ratio in Egypt’s tech industry.

“The program includes sessions on front-end web development, data visualization, digital marketing as well as workshops on confidence and resilience and talks by industry experts about the tech field,” Hoda Hamad, the manager of the program, told Al-Monitor.

Hamad was a participant in one of AlMakinah’s tech classes. After noticing that the AlMakinah classes were mostly dominated by men, she decided to join the school’s team and launch a program for women “to rebrand the field and remove any social stereotypes set by society.”

“In our last full-stack program, we only had four girls in the class. I was one of them. And after attending this class, I decided to change that,” she said.

There is now a class of 17 bright women, 15-36 years old, from different educational and economic backgrounds. “They are currently learning front-end web development. They started on Aug. 20 and the program will go until Aug. 31,” she noted.

AlMakinah was launched two years ago to bridge the gap between the requirements tech companies seek from employees and the skills job seekers possess. Since then, the tech school has launched several programs that teach web development in a practical way that satisfies the needs of the companies looking to hire new people.

“Apart from teaching women the basics of programming and building their own websites, the Women in Tech Track seeks to get those women access to numerous job opportunities, which include remote jobs and where they could gain a stable income working from home,” Hamad said.

 The Women in Tech Track also launched a hashtag on Twitter, #YouCodeGirl. “The main aim of the hashtag is to encourage women to penetrate the tech industry as well as to trigger a supportive culture among their communities,” Hamad added.

Read the full article on Al-Monitor here.