Huawei’s ‘TECH4HER’ scholarship programme for female STEM students returns for third year
TECH4HER awardees from TU Dublin, UCC and UCD
29 November 2022: Huawei Ireland has announced details of the third year of its ‘TECH4HER’ Scholarship Programme which offers a total of €90,000 annually in financial awards broken down across three universities to eligible female students studying STEM subjects.
The Huawei Tech4her Scholarships demonstrate Huawei’s commitment to diversity and inclusion in the tech sector. The scholarships, at both undergraduate and postgraduate level, provides students with a financial award and the opportunity to engage with employees from Huawei to learn about career paths and skills for work in the tech sector.
Having handed out 26 scholarships for the 2021/22 academic year, the Huawei ‘TECH4HER’ programme will be offering a total of 20 scholarships this year, with eight for TU Dublin, two for UCD and 10 for UCC. Students will be able to avail of financial awards as well as masterclasses and some other opportunities of engaging with outstanding female ambassadors offered from Huawei Ireland. The three universities have identified promising awardees who will soon receive the bursary.
Aimed at inspiring ambitious female STEM students, who want to make a real contribution to Irish society, the application process involves candidates providing a personal statement on their passion for STEM, future career hopes, and barriers faced as a woman in this field, as well as an interview with an esteemed university panel. Top-performing students will then be awarded the scholarship, which will be provided for the current academic year.
Speaking at the announcement of the third year of the programme, Rujing Guo, PR and CSR manager for Huawei Ireland, said: “Huawei is committed to empowering women by giving them more opportunities to harness the immense potential of digital technology to transform society. Our mission is to support women who want to pursue a career in the exciting areas of ICT and STEM, with this initiative and our partnership with the SFI Research Centre Lero in the CodePlus programme which promotes coding for secondary school girls. ICT is traditionally a male-dominated area. In May of this year, the Central Statistics Office (CSO) published new data which showed that less than one-third (32pc) of Ireland’s ICT workers are women. We hope that our efforts will help close the gender gap in STEM in Ireland and help attract more young women into the ICT industry to drive sustainable and inclusive growth across the country.”
Professor Sarah Culloty, Head of College of Science, Engineering and Food Science (SEFS) at University College Cork added: "We are delighted to work with Huawei again to offer these scholarships to our students. The programme provides our female students with the opportunity to reach their full potential in an exciting and innovative area of study that will help transform our future society. I am especially pleased that the initiative has been extended to include our postgraduate and PhD candidates who are engaged in ground-breaking STEM research at UCC".
Speaking about the programme, Paul Doyle, Head of School of Computer Science, TU Dublin explained: “For women studying Computer Science courses in TU Dublin, the Tech4Her programme has helped our students gain a greater understanding of the skills needed to compete in the digital economy. The financial support is, of course, of great value. However, I believe, the network that is opened to the awardees through the programme is what delivers real, long-term impact for them.
“TU Dublin Tech4Her scholars have benefitted from masterclasses with female leaders within Huawei, involvement in both national and international events, and connection to a broader network of academics, policymakers, and industry leaders. All these activities have offered insight into the diverse range of opportunities within the tech sector. From TU Dublin’s perspective, the initiative has allowed us to highlight the hard work and talent of female students, who will become future leaders. We thank Huawei for their vision in developing the Tech4Her programme and look forward to continuing to work with them to empower more women to become STEM role models.”
Associate Professor Brian MacNamee, UCD School of Computer Science, added: “To borrow a phrase, machine learning research needs all kinds of minds. The impacts that machine is having, and will continue to, have on society are huge and all of society must be part of their development. This is why equality in technology is so important.”
The third year of the TECH4HER scholarship programme will continue to support change and to tackle the ongoing gender gap in STEM both in Ireland and aboard. Recent Pfizer research in Ireland confirmed the gender gap between male (15%) and female (7%) participation in STEM professions, while Engineers Ireland has stated that female engineers represent just 12% of the engineering profession in this country.