Sunday, August 20, 2017

Geek is the new chic for Myanmar women

Geek is good, women are being told. And, while we’re at it, tech is chic.

Geek Girls learn how to code at a workshop organised by Phandeeyar. Photo: Aung Win Htut / PhandeeyarGeek Girls learn how to code at a workshop organised by Phandeeyar. Photo: Aung Win Htut / Phandeeyar

“Woman in Tech of the Month” is a program promoting women who are successful in technological careers. Geek Girls Myanmar, an organisation of scientifically capable women, will select the candidate, who will appear on their website and on Facebook.

The Geek Girls group, whose motto is “Geek is the new chic”, celebrates women in science and technology in Myanmar.

“We want to showcase skilful women working in technology. Wherever they work, women are just as good as men as far as strength and skills are concerned. We will select one woman each month and post her profile and portfolio on our website. We hope to promote an inspirational female leader in the technological field for Geek Girls Myanmar,” said organiser Sandi Sein Thein, co-founder of Digital Kaway Company.

“We invite every woman who is working in a field related to technology to participate. GG is a community that includes people from every level, from students to entrepreneurs,” she said.

GG’s aim is also to get more women to playing important roles in technology. Ma Sandi Sein Thein said some women cannot work as they would like because of the culture, which frowns on women who stay late at the office, and tends to exclude women from tech fields.

GG was founded last September as a social media group for advancing female role models in technology and providing women with job opportunities.

“I want to promote women in the tech sector, which is currently dominated by men. Within a week of its establishment, the number of members increased to 50,” she said, adding that the group now has more than 300 members and is going strong.

GG was officially launched at the Connected Women’s Conference in October 2014. It was supported by Ideabox Myanmar.

“Most members have technological skills, but not necessarily experience in leadership and management. We held workshops and forums to develop the skills they need,” she said.

GG member Khin Sandar Win said she had developed more networks and gained more knowledge thanks to the organisation.

“In other countries, there are many groups such as GG. Honestly, we are coming to this a little late. As members, we can get more knowledge from sharing with each other, and get more information through workshops and forums,” she said.

“We will promote skilful women and support women in leadership roles,” said Ma Sandi Sein Thein.