Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) are male-dominated areas. For many years, it was believed women did not belong in either of these industries. However, in recent decades more female professionals began creating a path for those who were interested in STEM. It was them who started speaking up regarding the gender imbalance and bringing attention to statistics that needed to change.
According to a study by STEM Women in 2019, there was a 35% of female students majoring in STEM studies by 2018, while only 22% of the STEM workforce were women. They noticed, “the percentage of female graduates with core STEM degrees is steadily growing […] This figure is also translated in the female STEM workforce, with women making up 22%. This shows that some work needs to be done to encourage women to both study these subjects, and transition into the workforce.” Thus, more and more female STEM professionals are working to inspire young girls to join these areas of expertise. One of them being Cindy Nyoumsi.
A UCLA Graduate Working for Facebook
Cindy Nyoumsi once was one of those young girls passionate about Science and Math. Against all odds, she majored in Actuarial Science and graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles with a Bachelor of Science. Her years as an undergraduate student helped her develop the ability to identify problems that have yet to find a solution and create those solutions for them.
Shortly after her graduation, Nyoumsi found herself working for a company many dream of but only a few work for: Netflix. There she spent two years working on Content Financial Planning and Analysis. During this time, her ambition pushed her to keep expanding her knowledge and her network—Cindy Nyoumsi decided to go back to college for her Master of Science. She is currently a graduate student at the Georgia Institute of Technology where she will graduate in 2021 with a Computer Science (Machine Learning Specialization) MS.
However, expanding her knowledge was not enough. This smart lady knew she wanted to continue growing her career, so she moved on to another top-tier company: Facebook. She currently works in Strategy and Operations—Media Integrity, proving that women whose passion lies in STEM can definitely succeed.
Women in STEM Advocate
Cindy Nyoumsi knows what it is like to be a woman in the STEM workforce and that is why she continuously advocates for younger girls to have better opportunities. This is what motivated her to start her own non-profit: Unipid, an organization that promotes diversity in tech by supporting women of African descent who are interested in this field.
Nyoumsi and her co-founder have experienced the need two see more women of color working in STEM, so they are working to make this happen. The work Unipid does is focused on the value of the unique perspective they bring into the workplace and the benefits that will come from creating more diversity in the STEM industry. Instead of waiting for others to open doors for them, they started doing it for themselves.
At Unipid, they offer different services to help women expand their opportunities. One of them is a personalized, action-oriented plan built around each individual background and experience. This is possible due to their mentorship program. Each member is matched with a mentor who works in their aspiring roles and who is able to build a meaningful relationship to help them succeed.
This non-profit is a diverse community of tech professionals. Everyone involved shares the same passion and wants to reach the same goals. That is why the organization offers networking events to meet new peers and exchange ideas.
Building a Diverse STEM
The STEM door spent a long time closed for women. In more recent years, female professionals have been building their own doors and creating paths for more to follow. Cindy Nyoumsi is one of those. As a STEM student and tech-worker, she knew how difficult it could be to get involved and find a job you are passionate about. However, she is one of those lucky women who was able to land her dream job at a respected company. Based on this experience, she co-founded Unipid to help young STEM-passionate girls find their own paths.
Women are capable of doing anything they set their mind to. Cindy Nyoumsi is living proof of that!