Photo - Schoolgirls at one of the activities organised by Intel Malaysia for its International Day of the Girl celebrations.
Semiconductor firm Intel Malaysia gathered 200 students from five schools in Penang and Kulim, Malaysia, to celebrate the United Nation's International Day of the Girl with a documentary screening as well as career and motivational talks.
Among Intel employees who shared professional life stories was Oh Haw Kuang, a software support manager, who said, "My recent work with the Intel Education Service Corps has really opened up my eyes to how so much more work is still needed to ensure children receive the education they need and deserve."
"It was a good opportunity to show our students here how lucky they are to have in Malaysia all the opportunities they need to succeed in their education in comparison to children from other developing countries like Kenya," said Oh, adding that he has been posted last year to Kenya for a two-week immersion programme to support the deployment of Intel classmate PCs in local schools.
"From solar-powered schools in Zambia to rural orphanages in Vietnam, IESC [Intel Education Service Corps ] teams work with non-governmental organisations [NGOs] to define education technology solutions that meet their needs and to prepare rigorous plans for deployment, training and long-term sustainability," added Oh. "For example, Intel and non-profit organisation Orphans Overseas helped preschoolers in Thika, Kenya learn basic literacy and numeracy with customised educational content on Intel-based classmate PCs."
Photo - Oh Haw Kuang, Software Support Manager, Intel Malaysia.
Children can become powerful catalysts
"The message shared with our guests through the day's session with Oh and the screening of the film 'Girl Rising' is the same one: that with an education, girls and women - and of course children in general - can become powerful catalysts for progress and economic growth, not only for the nation but also the world," said Intel South East Asia corporate affairs director, Abdul Rahman Abu Haniffa.
"Over the past few years, Intel has seen overwhelming data showing that one additional year of primary education alone can increase their future wages by 10 to 20 percent, while an extra year of secondary school adds another 15 to 25 percent (Council on Foreign Relations, 2004)," said Abdul Rahman. "This research also shows that educated women reinvest much of their income into their families, proving that the impact of an educated girl or woman can be exponential and far-reaching."
"Intel recognises the major role technology plays as both a bridge and an accelerator in not only improving the quality of education but also access to education," he said. "Every year, Intel and the Intel Foundation invest more than US$100 million in corporate contributions around the world, including education efforts focused on girls and women."
"Through programmes such as Intel Teach, the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, Intel Learn and Intel Easy Steps, Intel is increasing its emphasis on girls and women," said Abdul Rahman. When empowered with technology tools, resources and opportunities to learn, the lives of girls are transformed and so are those of everyone they touch."
The event included a screening of 'Girl Rising,' about the power of education to change a girl - and the world, which featured Meryl Streep, Anne Hathaway, Liam Neeson, Cate Blanchette, and Selena Gomez.
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