Women Gain Skills to Create Their Own Technology Start-ups

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អត្ថបទ​នេះមានជាភាសា៖ kmខ្មែរ

Participation in global tech competition inspires Cambodian women

old-technovationTechnology is an empowering force for 23-year-old Phalla Vath. The computer science graduate and four of her fellow students participated in a global technology and entrepreneurship challenge and created the mobile app ‘E-result’ to help parents and guardians of students keep track of their academic performances.

“I was amazed at myself that I could work together with five other girls to make a mobile app and business plan to compete,” Vath said. “Now, my dream is to be able to create and run a tech start-up in the future.”

As the first and only Cambodian team, Phalla’s team competed with over 800 teams from around world in the 2014 global Technovation competition. Technovation is an international technology and entrepreneurship challenge for girls ages 10 to 23. Over a 5-week period, Vath’s team learned new skills, including coding, writing a business plan, and creating a mobile app to improve education in their communities.

“I have started feeling more confident about myself, and I have changed from not being able to understand a thing about technology and business to making a mobile app and writing a business proposal,” Vath said. “I didn’t even dream about this earlier.”

The young women who participated in the Technovation competition in 2014 are taking steps toward becoming entrepreneurs in the tech field. After completing her Technovation project, team member Phalla Em was accepted into Development Innovations’ Talent Development Program, an internship program that matches talented young people with Cambodian and international NGOs. Through TDP, Em continued to hone the skills she learned through Technovation as an ICT assistant at Aide et Action. Em hopes to use her new skills to create a tech company in the future.

“I am a web programmer and my friend is a network programmer, so we want to work together to build our own company to sell computer services,” Em said.

Development Innovations—a three-year USAID project designed to promote the uptake of technology and innovation in development—sponsored the team of Cambodian students participating in the 2014 Technovation competition. As part of its work, Development Innovations has encouraged a wide variety of members of the information and communications technology (ICT) community to use technology to deepen development impact in Cambodia.

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