C.K. Tedam University of Technology and Applied Sciences (CKT-UTAS) Branch of Women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics-Ghana (WiSTEMGh) was officially inaugurated in Navrongo on Saturday 13th February, 2021. The goals of the WiSTEMGh CKT-UTAS Branch includes mentoring the younger generation of women, whipping up girls’ interest in science education and building the leadership capacity of its members. This falls within the vision of WiSTEM Ghana which has the slogan ‘’Together We Inspire Generations.”
The Ceremony was graced by high profile personalities, including the Vice- Chancellor of CKT-UTAS, Professor Eric Magnus Wilmot, the Registrar, Dr. Vincent Ankamah-Lomotey, and President of WiSTEM Ghana, and Guest Speaker for the occasion, Prof Ibok Oduro of KNUST.
Welcoming Dignitaries and Guests to the Event, the President of WiSTEMGh CKT-UTAS, Dr. Mary-Magdalene Pedavoah decried the leaky pipeline in STEM education which according to her was very familiar with women in science. She observed further that “In recent times, there have been various global interventions and strategies aimed at solving this challenge.” Dr. Pedavoah encouraged women to be at the forefront to pursue the needed change with the support of their male counterparts. She also reiterated the aims of WiSTEMGh CKT-UTAS and hoped that the activities of the Association will contribute to attaining the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 4) on Quality education and (SDG 5) on Gender Equality.
For his part the Vice- Chancellor, Professor Eric Magnus Wilmot, stated that the development of Northern Ghana needed to be linked with science and technology and CKT-UTAS had the potential to bring about this much needed development in line with its mandate in technology and applied sciences. He embraced the idea of the establishment and subsequent inauguration of a WiSTEMGh branch in CKT-UTAS. He expressed the belief that the scientific race was not just for men but women as well. He encouraged WiSTEMGh CKT-UTAS to fish out the numerous ‘’Katherine Johnsons’’ (from the true story movie The Hidden Figures) among students of CKT-UTAS and in Upper East Region because they could solve the teething problems in Ghana. The VC further opined that CKT-UTAS will not reach its peak until the female student population outnumbers that of the males. He pledged the support of CKT-UTAS Management towards WiSTEM activities.
Inaugurating the Branch, Prof Ibok Oduro gave a background to the establishment of WiSTEM, the purpose for its existence, myths about STEM, aims and objectives and the future of WiSTEMGh CKT-UTAS branch. She shared her vision for the Association which included 50% increased enrollment of young girls into STEM programmes, who could spearhead, and dominate scientific research in Northern Ghana and occupy higher positions in CKT-UTAS in particular and northern Ghana as a whole.
The Registrar of CKT-UTAS in his solidarity message said, women had great potential and power inherent in them. He however expressed worry that fear could make some individuals choose less competitive areas in their fields of study and thus encouraged WiSTEMGh CKT-UTAS Branch members to break the jinx. “The woman has a God-given potential to incubate and therefore, think big and think science, technology, engineering and mathematics,” he added.
Solidarity messages were also delivered by WiSTEMGh branch of KNUST, WiSTEMGh Takoradi Technical University, St. John Bosco’s College of Education and Navrongo Senior High School.
In attendance were Deans of Faculties and Heads of Departments of CKT-UTAS, as well as UTAG CKT-UTAS Executives and Members.