At TWF, one of our key aims is to ensure girls have access to the same education, opportunities and resources as their male counterparts – particularly the jobs of the future. Strong STEM skills are a critical component. Our research has identified several barriers to girls pursuing STEM-related skills—including that girls do not view STEM-related jobs as having meaningful impact in society. This is why we integrate activities into our Girls Go Tech Programme that give our participants opportunities to utilise their skillsets to address challenges the Hong Kong community is facing.
This past Saturday was a great example of how we blend skills training and real-world application to demonstrate how STEM skills can be used to drive positive change. Our Girls Go Tech 2021 Hackathon Coding Competition, co-organised by Bloomberg, challenged 64 GGT participants aged 14-17 to work in teams to improve financial literacy among children or teens by building a game or virtual community focusing on learning financial management, building a savings habit, managing expenses or budgeting. Teams were given training on how to utilise CoSpaces EDU to create 3D spaces and physical simulations as well as how to use AR / VR to strengthen their presentation and financial literacy skills before developing their projects with advice and support from Bloomberg volunteers.
We could not be more thrilled with the projects which combine innovation, fun and practical application. Many projects used role-playing and gamification elements to teach users key concepts of financial literacy such as interest rates, loan payments, stocks and retirement planning. Watch the project ideas here.
Out of the 16 teams, five received special recognition from our panel of judges:
- Gold Award: The Hong Kong Management Association K S Lo College (Team 11)
- Silver Award: St Catharine's School for Girls (Team 10)
- Bronze Award and The Netizen’s Choice Award: Kit Sam Lam Bing Yim Secondary School (Team 8)
- The Best Innovation and Creativity Award: Pope Paul VI College (Team 9)
- The Best Presentation Award: Belilios Public School (Team 1)
We were privileged to have such a dedicated and generous network of schools, sponsors, trainers, speakers, judges and friends to support this Competition.
Opportunities like these enable young women to see first-hand how their STEM skills can be used to meaningfully address challenges facing the Hong Kong community. We are looking forward to collaborating on future creative activities like these and continuing to close the gender gap.
Get in touch at Fiona.Nott@twfhk.org.