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2016 International Day of the Girl-Child; Achieving Gender Equality in Education: IUGB’s Contribution

international-day-of-the-girl-2016-w-hashtagThe International University of Grand-Bassam (IUGB) has long championed equal educational opportunity and access for women, realizing that women with a first-class education have the power to substantially improve their communities’ economic and social health.  IUGB offers scholarships for qualified students without the means to attend university and at least 50% of its scholarships go to females.  The fourth International Day of the Girl-Child turns worldwide attention on adolescent girls and the Sustainable Development Goals, target gender equality, among other goals, to be achieved by 2030.  Adolescent girls-1.1 billion strong worldwide-suffer disproportionately due to social, economic and political barriers.   Given the right and access to an equal education, these girls can and will shape our world’s future.

On October 11, 2016 global efforts continue to ensure a world free of discrimination for young women and girls and in which they can achieve their goals through education.  U.N. Sustainable Development Goal Number 4 aims to provide equitable educational access.  One of its targets is to “…by 2020, substantially expand globally the number of scholarships available to developing countries, in particular least developed countries,…and African countries…” [1]  Educational access brings results-improved education accounts for about 50% of economic growth in 16 countries over the past five decades [2]. About half is due to more women entering higher levels of education, and greater equality as to the years men and women spend in school[3].

IUGB proudly provides its female students with a world-class education.  The University aggressively recruits female students to achieve gender parity in its enrollment and strongly supports STEM education as an essential edge for women in tomorrow’s workforce.  The University’s current faculty female/male gender ratio is 33%/67%.  As of Fall 2016 semester, 44% of our 655 students are female.  To recruit female students, we regularly visit Ivoirian high schools and feeder schools.  IUGB also hosted open houses by invitation on-campus every Saturday from February-May 2016 for prospective high school students, their teachers and their parents, and targets specific companies for the recruitment of children of their staff members.

Most importantly, IUGB’s Invest for Success Scholarship Campaign, now in its 2nd year, awards at least 50% of all scholarships to female students.  The University awarded its first four scholarships in 2015, two of which were awarded to female students, and plans to award at least 8 such scholarships in 2016.  We at IUGB plan to offer many more scholarships in 2017 as we seek to grow our enrollment even beyond its current numbers.

Girls have already made so many contributions to our world-but we still have much work to do!  Please join IUGB in supporting girls’ scholarships so that our international female student base may achieve the powerful world change it is capable of.  In the words of an IUGB graduate who is now a PhD Candidate at University of Virginia, Mantin Diomande, an education can bring you lasting confidence...”I can achieve anything I want to as an Ivoirian woman“.  You can be a part of this tremendous success-and help to change our world for the better-when you help IUGB fund a girl’s scholarship.   Consider a contribution to our Invest for Success campaign today (click below for more information and to donate):


For more facts on the UN International Day of the Girl and information on the 11 days of activism, follow UN Women on social media: