• EQUALS

EQUALS Her Digital Skills available from today on the EY STEM App

Updated: Jul 12

The new tool will help young girls gain new digital skills required for the future of work


A woman standing in a group of people, using scissors to cut purple ribbon
ITU development bureau chief Doreen Bogdan-Martin and representatives from ITU, EY, GSMA and W4 cut the ribbon to launch the Her Digital Skills channel on the EY STEM App

On June 3, 2022 at 4:00pm CET (10:00am EST), the EQUALS Skills Coalition proudly announced the collaboration with EY STEM App by launching the new EQUALS Her Digital Skills content channel to the app during ITU’s Generation Connect Global Youth Summit in Kigali. This collaboration represents another important step towards the EY and EQUALS shared ambition to accelerate the achievement of global digital gender equality.


The new content on the EY STEM App offers young women the opportunity to immerse themselves in the space of digital skills required for the future of work, including learning experiences on how to program an app, sell products online, and take real life action to improve their lives and communities. The first activity released focusses on online safety.


"We are excited to co-create digital upskill opportunities for young women, enabling HER to thrive in jobs of the future and solve (wo)mankind’s challenges better together. The launch of the EQUALS Her Digital Skills channel on the EY STEM App underlines the importance of public private partnerships and is a pivotal step in our efforts to deepen our social impact for young women and girls around the world," says Julie Teigland, EY EMEIA Area Managing Partner and EY Global Leader — Women. Fast Forward.



A group of people sitting in a conference room in Kigali, Rwanda
Participants at the Kigali launch event for Her Digital Skills channel on the EY STEM App


“At ITU, we’ve seen that the path to bridging the gender digital divide is shaped by cooperation and innovation. The launch of EQUALS Her Digital Skills on the EY STEM App is an example of how creative partnerships can bring new tools to help women and girls around the world realize their dreams and potential,” says Marco Obiso, Chief, A.I. Digital Network and Society Department, from the ITU.


Her Digital Skills brings together organisations for a common goal



EQUALS Her Digital Skills is an initiative co-founded by EY, International Telecommunication Union (ITU), Global System for Mobile Communications Association (GSMA) and Women’s World Wide Web (W4), aimed at providing access to free, gender transformative, foundational digital skills education for one million women and girls by 2026. Her Digital Skills offers workshops, online learning, e-mentoring, and events around the world to help bridge the global gender digital divide.


The lack of digital skills training tailored specifically around girls’ and women’s needs and preferences is one primary cause of the current digital gender divide.


The flagship initiative of EQUALS is called Her Digital Skills because it is addressing the current, unmet need for gender- sensitive and gender- transformative content [1]. The lack of digital skills training tailored specifically around girls’ and women’s needs and preferences is one primary cause of the current digital gender divide. Her Digital Skills’ offline and online learning has been is created by international gender and education experts and is specifically designed to serve female beneficiaries in terms of content, teaching methods and user experience.

“Her Digital Skills is a collaborative, global initiative to provide girls and women around the world with access to free, gender-transformative tech learning, certification and mentoring opportunities. It’s about putting the transformative power of tech into girls’ and women’s hands, enabling them to participate equally in the digital transformation and supporting them as they seek to fulfil their potential as tech professionals, innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders!” says Lindsey Nefesh-Clarke, Co-founder of W4.



Four women stand together with their faces showing through a cut-out cardboard frame with EQUALS logos on it
EQUALS Her Digital Skills team members representing ITU, EY, GSMA and W4 at the launch event

Director General of the GSMA Mats Granryd highlights that “Mobile technology has become a powerful force for social and economic development, delivering substantial benefits for women and their communities, particularly through digital connectivity. As such, delivering gender transformative educational initiatives such as EQUALS Her Digital Skills is critical if we are to connect the unconnected and include those left behind. As one of the founders of the EQUALS Global Partnership for Gender Equality in the Digital Age, GSMA is thrilled to support the launch of the EQUALS HDS channel on the EY STEM App today. This will undoubtedly help shape the next generation of female digital talent for years to come.”


About the EY STEM App


The EY STEM App is an innovative mobile platform for girls aged 13-18 that uses gamification and hands-on experiences to identify, inspire, and empower the next generation of girls in STEM and create a more equal digital world. The app was developed by EY teams in collaboration with SkillsVR, an organization dedicated to developing potential talent through immersive learning. After a successful pilot, the app is now being scaled globally for 100,000 girls in 2022, in line with EY's ambition of positively impacting a billion lives by 2030, through its corporate responsibility program, EY Ripples. The app is free to use and is focused on out-of-school learning.


The EY STEM App features e-learning content aligned to the OECD 21st Century Skills and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and curated from leading STE(A)M aligned institutions and organizations. The pilot also received recognition from the Nobel Prize Summit, the UN Global Compact on Gender Equality, the OECD Observatory of Public Sector Innovation, the International Center for Research on Women and the UN SDG Festival.


The EY STEM App is currently live in Australia, Canada, India, Ireland, Kenya, New Zealand, Philippines, Portugal, Rwanda, Switzerland, UAE, United Kingdom, United States, and more to follow (see iOS and Android).


The summit also marks the geographical expansion of the EY STEM App to Rwanda and Kenya, giving more than 500 young talents direct access to the app during the global conference.


Looking ahead


As part of the partnership between EQUALS Her Digital Skills and EY STEM App, future plans to elevate the tool include:

  • Provide at least 8 initial activities with a focus on foundational digital skills, between now and 2023

  • As of 2023, add additional activities focused on advanced and expert digital skills; and

  • Tap into the EQUALS wider network with up to 100 partner organizations across the globe, reaching into the farthest corners so that no young woman or girl remains digitally underserved


About the Kigali summit


The EQUALS HDS Channel launch event took place in the context of the #GenerationConnect Global Youth Summit held in Kigali, Rwanda from 2-4th June 2022. Titled “How can you harness the power of technology for a more equal future?” the event featured expert speakers from the EQUALS Global Partnership, EQUALS HDS Champions, SkillsVR and local partners.


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About EY Ripples

The global EY Ripples program aims to positively impact one billion lives by 2030. EY people, together with clients and other like-minded organizations, use their skills, knowledge, and experience to bring positive change across three focus areas: supporting the next generation workforce, working with impact entrepreneurs, and accelerating environmental sustainability. Learn more at ey.com/eyripples.


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About SkillsVR

SkillsVR is a US technology company that delivers immersive and measurable learning experiences through both mobile and VR, developing the current and NextGen workforce by focusing on the hard and soft skills needed to succeed in the future of work. Contact: Will Cooper, VP-Partnerships: will@skillsvr.com

 

[1] “I’d blush if I could: closing gender divides in digital skills through education” by UNESCO & the EQUALS Skills Coalition https://www.equalsintech.org/i-d-blush-if-i-could ;

“Cracking the code: girls’ education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)” https://unesdoc.unesco.org/ark:/48223/pf0000260079