Diana Wilson: The Ghanaian Woman Empowering African Women Through STEM Education

Diana Wilson has raised half a million dollars as the CEO/founder of Yielding Accomplished African Women (image via Face2Face Africa)

Much has been done over the years to empower women, celebrate their achievements and also to accelerate gender parity. However, a lot more needs to be done, and Diana Wilson, a Ghanaian-American social entrepreneur, is dedicated to ensuring that women, especially in African, are well educated and trained in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

Diana Wilson was born in Newark, New Jersey to a single mother. She graduated from the University of Virginia with a Bachelors degree in Sociology and Women Gender Studies, after earning over $500,000 in scholarships including a full scholarship from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Coca Cola Scholarship.

Diana Wilson

According to Diana, she has a passion for understanding the global sphere, propelling her to travel to eleven countries in four continents for free through the scholarships she earned.

Yielding Accomplished African Women

Diana Wilson, in 2018, founded Yielding Accomplished African Women (Yaa W), an expertly crafted, innovative and forward-thinking NGO, purposed to economically empower the lives of African women, and in turn enrich the global market. 

Named after Yaa Asantewaa (a Ghanaian feminist heroine), Yaa W aims at erecting and delivering the largest community of African female developers and financial analysts who are passionate about using STEM to revolutionize Africa and beyond. The uniqueness of Yaa W’s model lies in the infusion of the “essence of Africa”, “digital skills” and “intersectionality” built into the fabric of the organization.

Yaa W launched its online academy for STEM on March 6, 2021, making it Africa’s largest Digital Ecosystem and Academy of Women in STEM. The online academy will allow for more African women to tap into a support system, STEM courses, professional development masterclasses, and on-demand virtual content, individualised mentorship programs mostly for the paid members.

Courtesy Diana Wilson

Her reason for founding Yaa W

“I started Yielding Accomplished African Women after coming on a study abroad trip to Ghana in December 2016 to January 2017,” she told TechpreneurMag.

“We went to different companies to visit and learn about how business works in Ghana and I was very shocked to see the lack of women representation at all these top firms that we went to, both international and local.”

“I realized that this is something that isn’t really idiosyncratic to Ghana but this is something that is a global phenomenon. So when I got home, I felt it upon my spirit that there’s more I can do about it and I got together with a few friends and family and by September 2017 we came out with Yaa W,” she explained.

Diana Wilson (image via TechpreneurMag)

Her reason for getting into STEM

According to Diana, she got into STEM because of her father, her love of math and her experiences growing up.

“I entered the STEM field because my father is a mathematician… I love math and I was always good at it. When I entered college, I chose an interdisciplinary major of Sociology and Women Gender Studies because it satisfied my interests in understanding the historical present. However, I still maintained my interests in STEM so I completed three internships in Finance,” she told Nsesa Foundation.

“My experiences coupled with my educational training provided me with a strong intellectual preparation in critical thinking and analytical skills while exploring some of life’s most interesting questions. I am equipped with the intellectual discipline to make sound premises based on observed facts while operating under a social context,” she added.

Her achievements

Diana has completed prestigious programs with Google, Goldman Sachs, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley, PwC, Accenture, McKinsey & Company, and J.P. Morgan.

She has been featured by Forbes, Google, Joomag, BareMinerals, Ghana’s 30 under 30, Face2Face Africa, Educative.io.

She is also a global keynote speaker with appearances at top conferences/universities around the world including Concordia Summit, US Embassy, Georgetown University, University of Virginia.

Awards

  • Forbes 30 Under 30 Scholar Award
  • Future of Ghana 30 Under 30 Award
  • McKinsey’s Women’s Impact Award
  • Echol’s Scholar Award
  • Ben Carson Scholarship Award
  • Davis Projects for Peace

source: kuulpeeps.com

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