APWEN honours women engineers, inaugurates Lagos chapter
The Association of Professional Women Engineers of Nigeria (APWEN), an umbrella body for female engineers has honoured eminent Nigerian women who have distinguished themselves and raised the bar in chosen fields.
Those that bagged various awards include the Chairman, House Committee on Aviation, Hon Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, Vice President, World Federation of Engineering, Engr Valeria Agberagba, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, First Bank Mortgages, Engr Folashade Omoniyi and Human Resources Director, Unilever, Eniola Onimole among others.
The President of APWEN, Felicia Agubata, said the plan was to celebrate Nigerian women who are championing the progress of Nigerian women in their chosen fields.
According to Agubata, the celebrants have attained the status of role models based on their professional track record, experience and commitment to the advancement of their professions and indeed our society at large.
She added: “It is also to recognize female engineers who have distinguished themselves in the profession as well as other illustrious females in sundry professions, who have impacted the group’s advancement as a society and have thus, become worthy examples of inspirational figures for the Girl-Child.”The guest speaker, who is also a recipient of the association’s award, Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, spoke on the theme, “The potential of women in the sustainability of the economy”.
According to Onyejeocha, it is in the midst of challenges that women draw their strength from, noting that if there are no challenges, they can’t push forward.
“If we keep pressing, we will be able to achieve sustainable growth that will enhance women participation in national matters. Though the challenges are enormous but they are also insurmountable.“Gender equality has nothing to do with respect. It implies a woman can thrive to be recognized in the society. While we respect men and those in authority, the equality comes in in your ability to contribute to the sustainability of the economy. We are helpmate for the men and we are going to contribute for the success of our home front and the society at large,” Onyejeocha said.
During her inaugural address, the 7th chairman of APWEN, Lagos chapter, Engr Laolu Adedapo, hinged on continuity, innovation and togetherness as her watchword.She said her administration would sustain and improve on projects initiated by past leaders, ensure there is a balance at the home front and work place for young women engineers to remain in employment while programmes on effective leadership and mentorship that will improve career growth and professional performance would be executed.
Agubata said that the association has mapped out series of programmes to achieve its goal which include the ‘Invent it Build it’ scheme. She added that the target is the Girl-Child in upper primary school of classes five and six.
“Our mission is to stimulate women engineers to achieve professional growth and to provide a mentorship platform for women engineers as well as to be a potent voice for the advocacy to get the Girl-Child to take up the study of Science, Technology, Engineering and mathematics (STEM) tailored towards the Engineering profession,” she stated.
Shortly after the event, Agubata departed for Paris, France for a conference at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, (UNESCO) headquarters where she represented Nigerian engineers, as part of panellists in one of the sessions in celebrating the International Women’s Day, with the theme, ‘Contributing to global sustainable development – Women Engineers empowering rural women and girls’.
The round table where she was as a panellist discussed the under-representation of women in engineering, what engineering can do to improve the lives of rural women and girls in relation to the SGDs and successful case studies of women in engineering.The moderator of the session was also a Nigerian engineer, who is the Vice president of WFEO, Women in Engineering, Ifueko Agberagba.
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