ALX ,an Africa-focused technology training provider that equips young Africans with both the technical and professional skills has partnered with Mastercard to launch a fully sponsored Software Engineering training targeting 50 000 women across.
Dubbed WomXn and Tech,the initiative was inspired by the United Nations IWD theme of ‘DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality. The WomXn and Tech initiative will provide a launchpad for women to grow their careers in one of the most exciting and in-demand fields in the world.
“ALX knows that our collective future depends upon a female voice, a female brain, and her perspective in devising solutions for the world of tomorrow. Through ‘WomXn and Tech’, we are boldly proclaiming our call to action for women across the continent and the rest of the world to not just have a seat at the table, but to redesign the table. This 100% female software engineering cohort we are introducing helps to accomplish this,” says Fred Swaniker, Founder and CEO of ALI.
Women comprise just 5% of global software engineers. Considering that there are an estimated 690 000 software engineers in Africa, even applying the global average means that there is a significant gender divide that must be addressed.
The partnership aims to reduce this considerable disparity by offering sponsored placements to thousands of young women who meet the eligibility requirements for this programme.
The programme follows the recent acquisition by ALI of leading Silicon Valley institution, Holberton Inc. ALX is now one of the largest software engineering trainers in the world, which aligns with the organisation’s mission to develop Africa’s human capital at scale and enable women with best-in-class digital skills and excellence.
The cohort has been designed to support women from the start of their training and throughout their career journeys as they become part of The ROOM, ALI’s community of top technology professionals from across the globe.
“We want to encourage young women in Africa to see technology as a pathway to a great career. As such, we are investing in young women to give them the support they need to thrive and either pursue a career in technology or embark on technology ventures themselves,” says Sharon O’Donnell, Chief Experience Officer at ALI.
Reeta Roy, President and CEO of the Mastercard Foundation, adds: “The quality of a girl’s future is determined by the quality of the opportunities she has to learn and develop work-relevant skills. The Mastercard Foundation is committed to addressing systemic barriers inhibiting young women from accessing relevant learning and dignified economic opportunities. Through our partnership with ALI, we are working to help enable women to become catalysts and advocates for change in their communities, creating opportunities for future generations of girls and the economy as a whole.”
The tech training provider says it has enrolled over 100 000 learners across 54 African countries, with its eight core markets being SA, Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Rwanda, Egypt, Ethiopia and Morocco.
Applications for the ALX Software Engineering intake for women close on 15 March. The programme will start on 27 March.