Taltech, Unicorn Squad in initiative to get more girls into tech education

Unicorn Squad's appearance on ETV Sunday morning show
Unicorn Squad's appearance on ETV Sunday morning show "Hommik Anuga". Source: Kairit Leibold/ERR

Tallinn University of Technology (Taltech) and the education provider HK Unicorn Squad, which promotes tech education for girls, signed a cooperation agreement on Saturday aimed at developing IT and tech education among girls at all school levels.

HK Unicorn Squad, which has been in operation for five years, has so far offered tech education to elementary and middle school girls, while nearly 3,000 girls participate in their interest groups.

Together with Taltech's initiative, IT, natural sciences and technology education will also be extended to girls who have reached high school, making available TalTech learning laboratories and lecturers, as well as the students. 

In total, project managers want to involve up to 1,000 high school students in IT and tech courses.

Most especially, Taltech wants to bring more women students to the university's engineering, natural sciences and IT faculties and course, but who have so far chosen other majors, for various reasons. 

Hanno Tomberg, head of the Taltech's open university (Avatud ülikool) department, the percentage of women among the applicants for such professions remains small, although the opportunities for men and women to apply for engineering or software development are supposed to be equal on the labor market.

The longer-term goal is to provide technology education to up to 4,000 girls.  

HK Unicorn Squad says its mission is to develop girls' interest in technology, robotics and natural sciences from an early age and in so doing increase the proportion of women in ICT.

Unicorn Squad and Taltech's Virumaa College have been cooperating since last year.

The cooperation agreement is concluded for a six-year term.


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Editor: Karin Koppel, Andrew Whyte

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