TechWomen is an initiative of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA).

TechWomen empowers, connects and supports the next generation of women leaders in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) from Africa, Central and South Asia, and the Middle East by providing them the access and opportunity needed to advance their careers, pursue their dreams, and inspire women and girls in their communities. They bring the women together with their professional counterparts in the United States for a mentorship and exchange program

Through mentorship and exchange program, TechWomen strengthens participants’ professional capacity, increases mutual understanding between key networks of professionals, and expand women’s interest in STEM careers by exposing them to female role models.

Brief History of TechWomen

Back in June 2011, TechWomen launched their first program with 37 participants from Algeria, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco and the Palestinian Territories. In the next year, 2012, the program extended to Tunisia and Yemen. Similarly, the number of participants multiplied by two in 2013. Women came from countries including Cameroon, Kenya, Libya, Nigeria, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Africa and Zimbabwe. In 2015, TechWomen spread its wings to Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. From this year, 2017, TechWomen program has started including women from Pakistan.

Currently, this program is running in 22 countries to identify the potential of women in science and help them achieve their goals.

Why Should You Go For TechWomen?

In addition to advance your career in STEM fields, you will get to meet your counterpart in the United States for a mentorship and exchange program. Not only this but you will also get a chance to access the knowledge and lay your hands on resources you were not able to use before.

In order to empower women, the participants will go through a five week program of mentorship and workshops. This program will help the participants achieve their full potential. During the program, leading companies in the San Francisco Bay Area & Silicon Valley will provide project based mentorships to the participants. Furthermore, the participants will travel to Washington DC to attend meetings and other events.

Moreover, as the program comes to an end, the leaders and mentors will get the chance to connect again during the delegation trips to program countries in Africa, Central Asia and the Middle East.

Pakistani Emerging Leaders from 2017

Have a look at the profiles of Pakistani women that were enrolled in the 2017 program,

Link: Selected profiles from Pakistan in 2017

Selection Process

Applications are reviewed by independent selection committees composed of industry leaders and regional experts. Semifinalists may be interviewed by United States Embassy personnel in their country of permanent residence.

TechWomen encourages people with diverse backgrounds and skills to apply, including individuals with disabilities.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicants must

  • Be women with, at minimum, two years full-time professional experience in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields. Please note that internships and other unpaid work experience does not count toward the two-year professional experience requirement.
  • Have, at minimum, a bachelor’s degree/four-year university degree or equivalent.
  • Be proficient in written and spoken English.
  • Be citizens and permanent residents of Algeria, Cameroon, Egypt, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Palestinian Territories, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan or Zimbabwe at the time of application and while participating in the program.
  • Be eligible to obtain a U.S. J-1 exchange visitor visa.
  • Not have applied for an immigrant visa to the United States (other than the Diversity Immigrant Visa, also known as the “visa lottery”) in the past five years.
  • Not hold U.S. citizenship or be a U.S. legal permanent resident.

Applicants will be given preference if they,

  • Demonstrate themselves as emerging leaders in their chosen professional track through their work experience, volunteer experience, community activities and education.
  • Are committed to return to their home countries to share what they have learned and mentor women and girls.
  • Have limited or no prior experience in the United States.
  • Have a proven record of voluntary or public service in their communities.
  • Have a demonstrated track record of entrepreneurialism and commitment to innovation.
  • Demonstrate a willingness to participate in exchange programs, welcome opportunities for mentoring and new partnership development, and exhibit confidence and maturity.

How to Apply?

Now that we have encouraged you to pursue your dreams and join this program, let’s move on to the most important phase, the application phase. You can start your application from this online registration form here,

Application Link: https://app.techwomen.org/application/

Deadline: 17th Jan, 2018

Important Dates to Remember

  • November 2017- TechWomen application opens
  • 17 January 2018 – TechWomen application closes
  • March 2018 – Semi-finalists will be contacted
  • May 2018 – Final decisions will be made
  • September 2018 – TechWomen program begins in San Francisco, CA
  • October 2018 – TechWomen program concludes in Washington, DC
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