Global Recognition for DLI Founder

On 1 March in Barcelona, Ms. Cheryl Miller Van Dyck, founding director of the Brussels-based Digital Leadership Institute, was recognized for her outstanding achievement in increasing participation of girls and women in technological studies and careers around the world. Miller, American by birth and a 20-year Belgian resident, was awarded the prestigious Global Mobile Award by a jury representing global ICT interests at the 2018 Mobile World Congress, whose attendance this year surpassed 100,000 visitors.

Miller received a GloMo Award in the “Industry Leadership Individual” category for what the jury called her “immeasurable impact” on increasing inclusion in the global tech sector over the past ten years.

The Digital Leadership Institute, founded by Miller in 2015, was also finalist for a Global Mobile Award in the “Industry Leadership Organizations” category, for the second year running.

For more details and contact, please find a press release here: PR CMiller Glomo 2018

DLI Celebrates Top Women in Tech

On 30 November 2017 at BeCentral in Brussels, the Digital Leadership Institute and its partners welcomed over two hundred key stakeholders and community members to celebrate the fifth edition of the European Ada Awards and to share the success stories of the 2017 Digital Brusselles project with support from the Digital Belgium Skills Fund. The Ada Awards are a long-standing pledge to the European Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition that recognise top European girls and women in tech and the organisations that support them.

Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder, opened the evening with a warm thank you to DLI supporters, followed by keynote presentations from Ms. Céline Vanderborght, Brussels Region Smart City Manager and Ms. Andrea Almeida Cordero, Member of Cabinet for Ms. Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for the Digital Single Market. Both speakers committed their support and that of their stakeholders to active engagement of girls and women for fulfilling the vision of an inclusive digital Europe. A subsequent tweet about the event by Commissioner Gabriel was very well received on Twitter.

Opening presentations were succeeded by graduation of over sixty participants from the 2017 Digital Muse After School program with Ms. Valentina Cala DLI Digital Creative Manager, and from the first-ever cohort of the CYPRO “First Steps” program with Ms. Mai Ensmann, DLI CYPRO Coordinator.

Ms. Katja Legisa, Digital Brusselles Director, then recognised 200-plus participants of the 2017 “Female Digital Starters” training program, followed by an inQube / Digital Brusselles project pitching session hosted by Ms. Lama Jaghjougha, a recent Syrian refugee to Belgium and founder of Move Women Refugees Forward. Initiatives presented included those launched in the context of inQube Move It Forward events over the past two years, including:

  • Brussely – a platform by/for/about Brussels Generation Y-ers, presented by Ms. Safia Bihmehdn
  • MESS – a gamified concert-going platform for Brussels citizens, presented by Ms. Alexandra Pykacz & Ms. Edith Euan
  • MIA – a virtual innovation space for Brussels citizens, presented by Ms. Muna Ibrahim
  • African Gist – an African tech internship program, presented by Ms. Cynthia Mukendy
  • Tabadoul – a professional mentorship program for women refugees led by ENoWM and DAW, presented by Ms. Sinem Yilmaz

A particularly moving moment of the evening came about when, as part of her pitch for the Brussely platform, Ms. Safia Bihmehdn read a poem she composed about her participation in the Move It Forward for Women in Media event, which as the poem describes, inspired her toward a whole new direction in digital entrepreneurship and in celebrating the youth and diversity of Brussels.

The final highlight of the evening was the 2017 European Ada Awards, launched with inspiring keynote presentations by Ms. Dinah Barret, Senior Solutions Architect for EMEA at Amazon Web Services, and Ms. Gabriela M. Juric, 2016 European Digital Girl of the Year, and co-hosted by Ms. Miller and Ms. Loredana Bucseneanu, DLI Strategy Officer.

2017 European Ada Award trophies were presented by Ms. Simone Hume of Amazon Web Services in the following categories and announced by noted Ada Award partner representatives:
1. Ms. Pascale Van Damme, Vice President and General Manager at Dell EMC Commercial Belux, is 2017 European Digital Woman of the Year, as announced by Ms. Austeja Trikunaite, Secretary General of CEPIS.

2. 2017 European Digital Girl of the Year honours were awarded in the following age categories:

15-17 Year Old Category, as announced by Ms. Kiki Walravens, GSMA:
Maeve Galvin (Ireland)

11-14 Year Old Category, as announced by Mr. Laurent Roux, Impact Officer at European Institute of Technology:

  • Aoibheann Mangan (Ireland)
  • Charlotte Johnson (United Kingdom)

10 Years and Under Category, as announced by Ms. Tomislava Recheva of European Schoolnet:

  • Helena Staple (United Kingdom)
  • Zara Ilyas (Ireland)
  • Ruby Scott Kenny (Ireland)

3. Teen-Turn of Ireland is 2017 European Digital Impact Organisation of the Year Award, as announced by Ms. Michela Palladino, Director of European Policy at Developers Alliance.

The 2017 European Ada Awards and Digital Brusselles celebration concluded with a reception catered by From Syria With Love, an organisation led by recent Syrian women refugees to Belgium that Digital Brusselles is honoured to support.

The Digital Leadership Institute and Digital Brusselles would like to thank the speakers, judges, partners and sponsors of the 2017 European Ada Awards and Digital Brusselles celebration, including the Digital Belgium Skills Fund, Amazon Web Services, European Institute of Technology, CEPIS, European Schoolnet, Edosoft, GSMA, Developers Alliance and BeCentral.

Congratulations to all the girls and women recognised by this year’s Ada Awards and Digital Brusselles celebration. We are looking forward to welcoming even more of you again next year!

DLI Founder Appointed to EU Digital Skills Board

On 28 September in Brussels, Ms. Cheryl Miller, Founder and Director of the Brussels-based Digital Leadership Institute, joined the first meeting of the Governing Board of the European Commission’s Digital Skill and Jobs Coalition, to which Ms. Miller has been appointed for a two-year term.

According to the Commission, the aim of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition Governing Board is to “provide strategic leadership and give high-level advice to improve the functioning and the impact of the Coalition, as well as monitoring its overall progress.” The Governing Board also represents the views of the Coalition partners at European level, and acts as a link between pledgers, national Coalitions and social partners.

At its first meeting, Ms. Miller accepted to lead the Governing Board’s work on “digital skills for ICT experts,” one of four digital skills pillars treated as priorities by the Coalition. Ms. Miller and her colleagues will provide recommendations in these areas to the new European Commissioner for the Digital Single Market, Ms. Mariya Gabriel, in the context of the Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition Conference, taking place in Brussels on 7 December.

Ms. Miller joins representatives of eleven other Digital Skills and Jobs Coalition stakeholders in the Governing Board, whose organisations represent pledging members, national coalitions, and Coalition social partners.

DLI Launches Europe’s First Female Tech Incubator

On 25 October in Brussels, the Digital Leadership Institute launched Digital Brusselles, Europe’s first female tech incubator, with the mission of promoting inclusive digital transformation by increasing leadership of girls and women in the digital society. The launch event, which took place as part of the first Open Door Day at BeCentral, was supported by the Digital Belgium Skills Fund and dozens of DLI partners, and attended by hundreds of DLI community members.

Ms. Saskia Van Uffelen, CEO of Ericsson Belux and Digital Champion of Belgium, provided a keynote to kick off the launch event and was joined in a panel on “The Heart of Inclusive Digital Transformation,” moderated by Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Founder, by luminaries from the Belgian and European technology ecosystem noted below:

The opening panel was followed with inspiring talks by Ms. Manon Van Hoorebeke, 2014 Digital Girl of the Year, and Ms. Christine Gerpheide, Senior Cloud Solutions Architect at Amazon Web Services. Over the course of the afternoon, Ms. Sandrine Droubaix — DJ Sand — and Ms. Valentina Càla, DLI Digital Creative Officer, led hands-on digital music composition workshops for participants of the Digital Muse After School program and BeCentral’s Open Door Day .

DLI Among Top Startups in Belgium

On 19 October, Brussels-based Digital Leadership Institute joined Digital First 2017 to celebrate being selected among the Best 100 Belgian Startups by a high-level jury organised by media company Digimedia. DLI team members, Ms. Valentina Calà and Ms. Katrien Geraedts, were on hand to greet investors and discuss the work of DLI, who has successfully launched Europe’s first female tech incubator, Digital Brusselles, and is driving world class programs to differentiate Brussels, Belgium and Europe as “the heart of inclusive digital transformation.”

“With a three-year track record as a social enterprise, DLI is outperforming most startups even outside its class,” shares DLI Founder, Ms. Cheryl Miller, about the recognition. “We believe this is as much about how innovative and impactful our work is, as it is about the engagement and dedication of our partners to our mission,” she says. “It is not every day, for example, that organisations like Amazon Web Services and the Digital Belgium Skills Fund come together to help drive positive change,” says Ms. Miller. “This is a testament to both the quality of the work we are doing and to just how important that work is — for which we feel very honoured.”

Coding Brings Confidence Say Europe’s Women

In May 2017, the Digital Leadership Institute team met in Croatia with its WOW Code2Confidence partners, a project funded by the Erasmus+ program of the European Commission. The project organisations explored how learning to code can lead to more confidence for women during studies and in the job market.

During the meeting, results from a pan-European survey on the interest of European women in coding were presented. Key findings of the survey, which was carried out by WOW Code2Confidence partners across Belgium, Croatia, England, Lithuania, Luxembourg and Romania, are below:

  • 53% of European women surveyed expressed an interest in learning to code;
  • Most women surveyed rate their current coding skills as Beginner, and 85% of women surveyed noted that coding activities give them confidence.
  • The main reason for women’s interest in coding is because coding skills are required for studies/work and due to an expressed desire to become more familiar with technical terms and jobs.
  • The survey also revealed that the main reason for those surveyed having never tried coding is due to a lack of suitable training resources.

Read the full results of the survey in our most recent WOW Code2Confidence newsletter, and for more information about the project, or about other DLI work promoting women in coding, please contact us.

On 5-6 October in Brussels, DLI will host the Fall 2017 meeting of the WOW Code2Confidence Project whose focus will be how women can leverage coding skills to improve their opportunities in the job market. Stay tuned!

 

FREE Android Training Toolkit

In the context of the Coding for Young People project, the Digital Leadership Institute and its partners have developed a FREE Android App Training Toolkit for use and sharing by individuals and organisations interested in teaching Android using the MIT App Inventor platform.


In order to fully benefit from the Toolkit, please be sure to:

  1. Download the ‘Talk2Me” training presentation and watch the 50-minute “Talk2Me” training video. Use these to teach Android to your students, and feel free to share them with others!
  2. Download the training guidelines that include links to resources in English, Italian and Spanish!
  3. Fill out the Survey about your experience to let us know if we’re on the right track!
  4. Join the Coding for Young People Community to benefit from future resources from the project and its partners!
  5. Don’t hesitate to contact us if we can support you in any way in your mission to teach coding to young people!

Happy coding!

Featured Image: PC Magazine

Celebrate Girls in STEM for Women’s Day 2017

In celebration of International Women’s Day 2017, the Digital Leadership Institute will organise several exciting activities across Europe promoting “women and girls in STEM*”. In Brussels, DLI will lead an invitation-only visit with Ms. Vera Jourova, European Commissioner for Justice, where several young women — including Ms. Manon Van Hoorebeke, 2014 European Digital Girl of the Year — will share about their experiences and aspirations toward studies and careers in STEM sectors.

In Dublin, Ms. Cheryl Miller, DLI Cofounder, will give a talk on “Be Bold for Change” as part of a day-long event organised by Amazon Web Services, in order to promote greater participation of girls and women in digital studies and careers.

Ms. Miller will also author a special International Women’s Day opinion piece on “the digital gender divide” for General Electric‘s GE Reports, read by three million people annually.

In collaboration with the European Commission and European Parliament, Ms. Miller will also moderate an International Women’s Day event on “Women’s Economic Empowerment” that will feature keynotes and panel discussions by European thought-leaders, including renowned French nuclear physicist Hélène Langevin-Joliot, granddaughter of Marie Skłodowska-Curie.

Coming up on 29 April 2017, DLI will organise its second “Girl Tech Fest” promoting ESTEAM** skills for girls, for which we welcome inquiries by potential partners, workshop leaders, volunteers and sponsors. Other DLI activities supporting our mission of inclusive digital transformation may be found on the DLI Calendar and Upcoming Activities pages.

  • *Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics
  • **STEM plus Entrepreneurship and Arts

DLI Recognised by Global Mobile Awards

At Mobile World Congress 2017 on 2 March in Barcelona, the Digital Leadership Institute and its cofounder, Ms. Cheryl Miller, will both be recognised for their outstanding contributions to closing the gender gap in mobile and digital sectors, as part of the first-ever Women4Tech Summit. Ms. Miller and DLI have respectively been shortlisted for 2017 Global Mobile Awards for Mobile Industry Leadership in both the individual and organisation categories.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djyGQ5moEYU

In support of this year’s Women4Tech activities at MWC, the Digital Leadership Institute will also spearhead a European Commission mission to MWC that includes policy-makers, researchers and advocates for Women in Tech from across Europe and Africa. In addition, Ms. Miller will moderate a panel on “Reducing the Gender Gap in the Startup Ecosystem” taking place on 28 February as part of the 4YFN (4 Years from Now) startup event at MWC. Ms. Reine Essobmadje, founding member of DLI, will also be on hand the same day to award top projects from the Hack D Gap global challenge promoting gender balance in the tech industry.

logo_Women4Tech

For more information about DLI activities at MWC and the Women4Tech Summit, please follow our activities and feel free to contact us!