ISP Gender Equality Grants - Examples of activities
The ISP Gender Equality Grants have allowed for an impressive variety of activities targeting gender bias at different education levels, and, even if representing only a very little part of the total budget that the groups dispose during the year, have been catalysts for focusing on gender issues.
ISP sees different main “tracks” for the activities that are carried out:
1. To encourage female university students to continue to Master studies and/or PhD studies in mathematics and physics through
- New scholarship programs (Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Zimbabwe).
- Science Camps, Seminars, Laboratory visits and Hands-on experiments directed to female students (Ivory Coast, Tanzania, Uganda).
- Mentoring, training and identifying the needs that the female students can have (Burkina Faso, Kenya).
2. To inspire female students through role-model sessions through
- Inviting distinguished female academics to visit the universities and to give a plenary talks on women in sciences and how to break the glass ceiling (Zimbabwe, Kenya).
- Organizing meetings for motivating discussions as well as arranging mentorship days with senior female faculty members to address different career paths (Kenya).
- Organizing regional workshops in Eastern Africa about girls potential in STEM. The workshops aim at addressing the gender gap in STEM through initiatives that can inspire and nurture the interest in STEM among girls at a very early age, while motivating women at tertiary level to avoid falling in the cracks of the leaky pipeline in the STEM careers. The audience consists of high school and university students, high school teachers, university lecturers and researchers, and STEM professionals (Kenya).
3. Many groups see the need to engage female students in primary school and high school in the basic sciences
- ISP funded groups visited girls’ schools in rural parts of the countries, where girls do not continue to higher education and where the drop-off rate girls is already high at high school level (Kenya, Uganda).
- ISP funded group organized workshops about science and career opportunities in science, e.g. ”The use of mathematics in other sciences”, for female secondary school mathematics. Astronomy was used as a tool to motivate and inspire girls to science (Ethiopia, Uganda).
- A five-week training program was organized for 20 high school students (50% females) on scientific measurements, conducting simple physics experiments and writing lab reports to make physics more accessible (Ethiopia).