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DST, IBM collaborate to scale up initiatives for nurturing girl students interest in STEM areas

"The Engage with Science platform will make students interact, participate and get involved with the sampling and active consumption of S&T content, including Cloud, Big Data through the usage of digital tools," he added.

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 09-10-2020 20:03 IST | Created: 09-10-2020 20:03 IST
DST, IBM collaborate to scale up initiatives for nurturing girl students interest in STEM areas

To nurture interest of girl students in Science Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), the Department of Science Technology and IBM India have announced collaborations to scale up 'Vigyan Jyoti' and 'Engage with Science' initiatives, a statement said on Friday. The Vigyan Jyoti programme was launched by the DST in 2019 to inspire girl students to pursue higher education and career in STEM fields. It provides a scholarship, visit to nearby scientific institutions, science camps, lecturers from women scientists and career counselling.

It is implemented by Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya in 58 districts, with the participation of about 2,900 students. "The partnership with IBM India will strengthen the current activities and will be expanded to include more schools in the future. Women tech experts working at IBM India will interact inspire girl students to plan for a career in STEM under the programme. This will strengthen the DST's initiative to increase the number of women in technology fields," the statement said.

The IBM will work with Vigyan Prasar, a body under the DST, to help popularise science through several strategic initiatives, including 'Engage With Science'. This is an interactive platform that will be built on top of the India Science Over-The-Top platform to encourage and inspire high school students to pursue science & technology for a career.

As part of the collaboration, IBM will run the day-to-day activities of the programme, including student workshops, seminars, and leverage its expertise to mentor the students. The platform will make students interact, participate and get involved with the sampling and active consumption of S&T content, including Cloud, Big Data, etc. through the usage of gamification tools and Artificial Intelligence /Machine Learning components. "The Department of Science & Technology (DST) and IBM India announced collaborations to scale up two DST initiatives--Vigyan Jyoti and Engage with Science (Vigyan Prasar), on October 8," the statement said.

Announcing the collaborations, Professor Ashutosh Sharma, secretary DST, said the partnership with IBM will make these programmes of DST and Vigyan Prasar reach the students and teachers in interactive ways on a large scale. "The Engage with Science platform will make students interact, participate and get involved with the sampling and active consumption of S&T content, including Cloud, Big Data through the usage of digital tools," he added. "In 5 years from now, we want to see the proportion of girl students enrolled in engineering and technology streams increasing to one-third of the total," Sharma said.

The DST has been working on increasing the percentage of women in the STEM related areas -- academic as well as research institutions. The new Science Technology Innovation Policy (STIP) - 2020 too will emphasis on this aspect. "DST and IBM India aim to create a robust STEM ecosystem that nurtures critical thinkers, problem-solvers, and next-generation innovators through Inspire Awards-MANAK (Million Minds Augmenting National Aspirations and Knowledge) – a programme targeting to build one million ideas rooted in science from school students," the statement added..


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