Date: 23/12/2019

Mentoring and practice for future women leaders and innovators in the ICT field

Official launch of the "Girls in Tech" mentoring and educational program.

AmCham Serbia and the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications have officially launched the "Girls in Tech" program at the Palace of Serbia within the framework of the 2019-2020 National Program for Women's Empowerment in the ICT field.

The program gathers 23 female students, selected by public invitation, from the University of Belgrade’s Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Faculty of Physics, Faculty of Organizational Sciences, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Mathematics, Faculty of Transport and Traffic Engineering and Faculty of Technology and Metallurgy, as well as the Faculty of Technical Sciences and the Faculty of Science in Novi Sad and the Faculty of Electronic Engineering in Niš.

The program is an opportunity for girls studying at technical faculties who are in the final year of undergraduate or master’s studies to be mentored and experience practice at successful companies in the ICT field, with the aim of developing connections with each other and helping them acquire concrete knowledge and strengthen their leadership skills.

Tatjana Matič, State Secretary at the Ministry of Trade, Tourism and Telecommunications, welcomed the students and expressed her expectation that through their careers they would eliminate prejudice about professional gender predisposition, as IT and engineering are still male-dominated areas.

"I hope that we will have leaders, innovators and successful entrepreneurs among you soon, and I also believe that this program will help you direct your careers ambitiously," Matić said.

She reminded attendees that although Serbia enjoys 7% higher representation of girls in ICT studies than the European average, it is necessary to continue to actively combat gender imbalance, especially as this is the area with the best development potential and the highest earnings.

"AmCham has launched initiatives aimed at empowering young future leaders, narrowing the gap between what modern employers are looking for and what formal education offers. Over 200 young people have had the opportunity to take part in expert training and professional development programs – AmChamps and Women in Tech", said Jelena Pavlović, President of AmCham Serbia.

Pavlović emphasized that these programs were the inspiration for the emergence of the "Girls in Technology" program, which was designed to support girls who want to further expand their professional development, learning by doing and interconnecting through mentoring and personal and professional development workshops and seminars with inspirational speakers and experts in the field.

The students were also welcomed by the director of The Science Fund of the Republic of Serbia, Milica Đuric Jovčcić, following which "speed meetings" between mentees and mentors were held, on the basis of which mentoring teams and project tasks were formed.

Students will be led by 13 mentors from 9 companies: Algotech, Ball Packaging, DXC Technologies, Enetel, OriginTrail, Roaming Networks, Telenor, Telegroup and VIP.