Serhii Tokarev about Empowering Ukrainian Girls to Follow STEM Career

Ukraine’s IT industry is developing. In addition to the numerous programs aimed at advancing technology in the country, women have the chance to delve deeper into STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).

The first STEM ecosystem for Ukrainian women was introduced by Serhii Tokarev, co-founder and partner at the investment group Roosh.

The beginning of this ambitious project dates back to 2019 when he recognized the pressing need to bridge the gender gap in STEM fields.

With a mission to provide Ukrainian girls with equal access to education and opportunities in science and technology, STEM is FEM embarked on a journey to inspire, educate, and empower the next generation of female leaders.

One of the flagship endeavors of STEM is FEM is the art project “SHE is SCIENCE,” which showcased portraits of 12 famous Ukrainian female scientists. These portraits served not only as a tribute to the contributions of women in STEM but also as a source of inspiration for young girls aspiring to pursue careers in these fields.

The project garnered international acclaim, and the exhibitions were held at prestigious venues such as UNESCO headquarters in Paris.

Speaking about the motivation behind the STEM ecosystem, he emphasized the importance of systemic changes in fostering a supportive environment for aspiring young women in STEM. “Our goal is to become a guide for Ukrainian girls interested in STEM and dreaming of a corresponding career,” he remarked.

Central to this vision is the implementation of a mentoring program aimed at providing guidance and support to those venturing into the world of STEM for the first time.

Under the leadership of Elizaveta Korenko, the head of STEM is FEM, the organization has witnessed remarkable growth, engaging over 500 girls in its activities over the past five years.

With the launch of the STEM ecosystem, the aim is to further expand this reach, uniting 1,000 young Ukrainian women within the ecosystem by the end of the year, with a long-term goal of reaching 10,000 by 2030.

The STEM ecosystem comprises three distinct communities tailored to meet the diverse needs of its participants. The STEM is FEM Community caters to girls aged 14-22, offering them access to educational resources, mentorship opportunities, and career consultations.

For older participants looking to further their expertise and give back to the community, the Alumni STEM is FEM Club provides a platform for mentorship and professional development.

Additionally, the STEM is FEM Teachers Platform supports educators in enhancing their skills and knowledge in STEM disciplines.

As the project enters its operational phase, the focus is on establishing a robust framework for the functioning of all three communities.

Regular meetings, educational programs, internships, and collaborations with industry experts are among the strategies employed to ensure the sustained growth and success of the STEM ecosystem.

His dedication to fostering a culture of inclusivity and empowerment within Ukraine’s STEM landscape is reflected in the holistic approach adopted by STEM is FEM.

By providing mentorship, resources, and support to aspiring young women, the organization is paving the way for a more equitable and diverse future in STEM.

As Ukraine embarks on this transformative journey, his vision serves as a beacon of hope for generations to come.

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