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Blog Posts by By Renee Wittemyer, Director Social Impact, Intel Corporation

Learning to Think Critically: Girls and Digital Literacy Skills

December 14, 2012 - 03:34 PM

WISENET (Women in ICTs Shared Excellence Network) is the International Bureau’s convening platform that aims to leverage the experience, resources and connections of the international ICT community to better the situation of women, their communities and their countries. As part of this work, the FCC has invited prominent women and men in technology from around the world to post blogs sharing their experiences.

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Imagine going through 12+ years of school and then being told that you don't have the skills necessary for a job.

The founder and CEO of a global IT company based in India told me that there were plenty of people being trained in his country, but there were few that he would be willing to hire. The “reason,” he claimed, they didn’t have the skills necessary to compete in the global business economy.  In my research, I have had countless experiences watching students in East Africa, India and the United States memorizing and regurgitating information rather than being taught critical thinking, problem solving, and ways to communicate ideas effectively. These transferable skills are often missing in educational systems, but are essential to innovate and compete in a global workforce.

For technology corporations like Intel, a properly trained workforce is the foundation of our business and ability to innovate. That is why skills development is a key component of Intel's education strategies – whether that’s equipping young people with digital or information literacy skills, or training teachers to use technology to deliver 21st century learning skills.

Unfortunately, access to skills training is unequal – poor young women are least likely to have skills to become a productive force in the economy. 

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