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ERA boss urges female students to embrace science and technology

Eng Ziria Tibalwa Waako, CEO of Uganda's Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA). Photo/File

Kabarole, (UG):- Eng Ziria Tibalwa Waako, CEO of Uganda’s Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) has encouraged girls to take up science subjects to achieve gender inclusiveness and break stereotypes surrounding science courses.

Eng Waako noted that over the years, there has been a low turn-up of girls pursuing science and technology courses at higher institutions of learning because girls develop a negative attitude towards these subjects from primary and lower secondary schools due to a lack of proper guidance.

Eng Zaria says that the purpose of meeting these students is to mentor and attract female students to join the energy sector to achieve gender inclusiveness.

The ERA boss was Tuesday speaking at a meeting of over 200 female students from seven secondary schools at Nyakasura School in Fort Portal City.

The meeting under ERA’s project “Women in Energy” is meant to inspire female students to break the stereotypes and negative attitudes towards Science, Technology,  Engineering, and Mathematics – STEM subjects.

Eng Waako added that by raising awareness about renewable energy and the opportunities available for women in the sector, women can be empowered to access clean energy and reduce poverty.

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On her part, ERA Board Chairperson, Dr Sarah Wasagali urged the students to be focused, work hard, be disciplined, and believe in themselves to compete with their male counterparts in the science field.

According to Dr Wasagali, parents and the public should also be sensitized to change their mindset and support girls to take up science and technology courses.

The students who attended the meeting were from seven schools including Nyakasura School,  St Maria Gorrete Secondary School,  Mpanga Secondary School,  Ibaale Secondary School, Kabarole Adventist Secondary School, Kigarama Talent School, and Kamego Secondary School.

Namukisa Charleen a student at Nyakasura School says that through the meeting she realized that although she had always thought that science subjects were for boys, she was inspired by the stories of the female engineers.

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Norah Nabuufu from Kabarole Adventist Secondary School noted that although female students are determined to pursue science subjects they are pulled back by challenges like poor backgrounds, stereotypes, inadequate equipment in science laboratories, and distractions.

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