#Standtall: WOMANHOOD AND STEM FIELDS- A CASE STUDY IN SUSPENSE.
The plight-‘‘Women absence in stem field ’’ get most uprights minds upset, I am no different either. In my view, it is a disease worth being eliminated. Africa descents from immemorial delegates feeble mind responsibilities to women, a contradiction to stem profession which requires rigorous trainings cope with numerous technicalities and courage. This plight from personal research has influenced most young minds studying in high schools and colleges. What then is the faith of womanhood in stem professions? Well, while searching in earnest for a valuable answer, do quench your taste with this note; Lot of Mothers out there never liked science while in high school and avoided it immensely in college. In their views, it is too ambiguous to their understanding, too tasking to keep company or rather not fascinating or interesting as its counterpart-Art. Most of these figures are today single mothers and are the closest models to offspring[s]. Growing up as a child means learning immensely from them whether as a male or female hence the current observable trend general decline in stem fields [for both males and females]. Mothers associate constantly with that which portrays their interest, they take us to business venues if that’s their passion and in most cases their offices which influence our choice of careers. Who and when is then responsible for disposing the kids’ minds to elementary sciences, take them to venues which can spore up their interest in sciences or tour them on benefits accorded to being scientific oriented.
In other that women aren’t under-represented in energy sector and other stem fields, the following reasoned values of mine are spelt out as possible remedies if applied amicably and watched diligently;
1. DISBANDING NEGATIVE STEREOTYPES IN FEMALES REGARDING DIFFICULTIES IN STEM FIELDS
The following students are friends and classmates; Mike, Stella-Maris, Kelvin and Jean. The conversation contain herein took place on the social media between these friends.
‘Mike: …………….. I have decided to take a career in economics pals .how about that?
Stella-Maris: Am opting for engineering oh!! Either of these-Electrical Electronics, Mechanical.
Kelly: Waoh! Stella you kidding right? Or as usual-gone mad again. I envisage subjecting you to constant work pressure without attention for your family if as a business CEO of my establishment I choose to employ you ,you know those people aren’t wealthy, refusal to work leave them bankrupt
Jean: [laughing] I prefer banking for a profession pals. As for you Stella, get ready to creep under my car when I need your services. Hope your kids recognise you when you return home so dirty due to those grease stains? Babe that thing you are thinking is life stress, don’t say you weren’t informed.
Kelly: Stella that’s no woman job okay, fear electrocution too oh!!’
Inference from this group chat is; youths discourage themselves in numerous ways from taking a profession in stem fields. Stella-Maris thereafter changed her mind taking a less rigorous profession. Her friends had discouraged her dreams in science while ridiculing her. Nonetheless, consider the following;
Do Stella and her classmates’ possess the vital knowledge about stem fields? How come they are only skilled in ridicules and negative propaganda normally associated with stem professions?
How about Stella’s alma-mata? Do you think the school exposed them to stem fields as much as required?
If Stella’s school had workable counsellors and guardians, do you think decisions such as career opportunities will be treated and decisions taken just on the social media?
High schools and colleges are deemed formation ground primarily designed to cultivate good science bedrock in young minds to ease tertiary learning. Females and males alike need these early exposures. It is in this that offspring’s especially ladies [who mostly have learnt from their progenitors and believed science to be difficult] can be tutored to appreciate stem fields hence, passion to pursue stem fields imbibe in them.
2. INCO-OPERATING ‘FEMALE INTEREST IN SCIENCES’ WITH ACADEMIC LEVEL DEMANDS AS CRITERIA TO ADMITTING FEMALE FORKS INTO STEM COURSES MORESO, CONSCIENTIZING TUTORS REGARDING SEXUAL MOLESTATION OF FEMALES WHO DESPITE ALL ODDS CHOOSE TO STUDY STEM COURSES IN TERTIARY INSTITUTIONS.
The universe ideally is a global village and humans in my discretion share a common ancestry; God. In spite of this, women in most tertiary institutes are treated with much disdain by tutors [a prize for their refusal to be molested sexually]. Their grades are falsified in all possible measures making graduation an illusion. Lots can be done to remedy these pressings issues, viz;
Checkmating all ills perverted by lecturers towards female students through setting up a surveillance body in Universities and eradicating if possible all unreformed tutors in tertiary institutes who pose threat to the wellbeing of students.
Lowering the pass mark for females in stem related courses in the Universities[If the general pass mark is 50%, Women with 45% should be considered as pass grade]
Reducing the general theoretical academic requirements associated with stem field courses and supplementing them with the practically oriented ones to give early exposure to stem professions.
In Nigeria, only JAMB [Joint Admission and Matriculation Board ] grants students admission to tertiary institutes after meeting its academic level requirements. Over the years, this had become a major setback to number of females studying sciences, why? Because most women obtain poor grades in JAMB examinations. Consider this then;
-if JAMB grades is reduced for females in stem related courses
-if females studying stem courses with poor grades in universities aren’t dropped but given all necessary aids to remedy their pursuit challenges.
-if guardians pay adequate attention to their wards studies [a father with daughters in college shows no regards to their poor performance in elementary chemistry testes, some don’t even know what subject their child is good in and those s/he needs more helps, many don’t inspect assignments and only minute number of parents bother about the comments science teachers writes on students notebooks, what a conflicting demeanour.
Become a stem oriented parent today dear friends, give a listening ear today to that upcoming genius in energy field asking you;
‘Mummy how do transformers works? Why do electric bulbs explore suddenly? What happens when generator coils are removed?’ being a responsible parent and giving the kids necessary attention motivates them towards attaining their potentials.it makes them fill immensely important and yes they are, can’t you see their absence is a pain in the head?
3. STEM FIELD GLOBAL MEDIA AWARENESS; A MAJOR REQUISITE TO ENCOURAGING SPECIALIZATION IN STEM FIELDS.
Whether it is viewed as a world clarion call or specifically geared towards West Africa female youths, utilizing the mass media [TV, radio sets, journals, press conferences, social magazines, etc.] to broadcast the pressing need of women in stem fields is of paramount interest and should be visualized.
Daily, short comprehensive yet elaborate programmes could be broadcasted addressing stem fields to the general public. This helps to cultivate ethics of the field to college students and the likes. Most students at college level give little or no time to their studies, can such persons do well in stem fields requiring constant researches? With knowledge of the field being made popular, students with interest begin to amend their errors on time rather than going into the field unprepared, stem field too becomes common. The media annoyingly as it seems today is the exact opposite; populated with social activities, business adverts, etc.
4. AWARDING UNDER AND POST GRADUATES SCHOLARSHIPS TO FEMALES STUDING STEM COURSES IN UNIVERSITIES AND ENCOURAGING THEIR VERSATILITY THROUGH EQUIPTING THEIR LIBRARIES WITH RESEARCH MATERIALS
Do you know studying in sciences field is quite expensive, tedious, and above all demanding? One must be updated on daily bases, learn, unlearn or relearn certain values which like the nature of man are dynamic. Through scholarship grants, many females whom lack of capital is a setback to their academic pursuit are aided. Some who lose their love ones after a year or two in the university are in most cases victimized. Scholarships may be awarded on several categories to treat poor, average, and good grade students. These categories in most cases comprises of use of raffle draw, academic standing, uneducated communities nominations [here communities seen as being populated with illiterates are offered opportunities to provide one or two of it female indigene(s) for sponsorship into stem courses in tertiary institutes, etc.].
With few skirts undergoing studies in stem fields, fewer make it to graduation owing to; financial challenges, poor academic standings, poor inertia orientation, sexual molestation by lecturers, and lot more. Oh! Great mothers to be, oh! Daughters of Zion arise to your feet and answer this clarion call today, awaken that giant in you. Dear parents, tutors, peer groups, government and non-governmental bodies, and you reading this piece of research, know today that we all owe this generation and the future vital responsibilities foremost – enhancing gender equality especially in science fields. Why not propagate love for science in a female adolescent today? Why not encourage the eligible female youths to study sciences, give that SHE all that is needed for her to develop passion for arithmetic, if living for ever is an option I can opt for, then I will do so to lead a change in gender inequality, what about you?
With reverence to all reasoned values stated herein, ill disregards and notions about stem field wedded from the hearts of our mothers to be, viable females will aspire for profession in stem fields. In doing this, we might be saving our generation from shortage of manpower while sustaining the integrity of womanhood.