Sergey Tokarev about Gender Equality in STEM Fields

Gender inequality has become a relevant topic among IT specialists. A few years ago, women had fewer chances to obtain tech education or join a team of IT experts. That is why today, women make up only a third of the workforce in science and technology. To break this ancient stereotype, it is crucial to speak more about women’s achievements and contributions to science and high tech. Sergey Tokarev, the co-founder of the investment group Roosh, shared some insight on how to achieve gender equality in IT.

The IT entrepreneur notes that it is essential to provide various engaging and educational activities for young Ukrainian women. STEM is FEM is one of the educational projects which populate science among Ukrainian girls. The project aims to encourage the youth to choose STEM specialities and introduce them to female researchers. Sergey Tokarev adds girls can receive a good experience by participating in educational modules, courses and webinars, and interacting with international women experts.

“In Roosh ecosystem companies, we pay a lot of attention to achieving gender equality because we see it as the right thing from all perspectives. From a business standpoint, it leads to many innovative solutions that arise from teams with an equal ratio of men and women. Despite efforts at the business and government levels, the global issue of gender imbalance remains relevant, not only in the IT sector,” shared Tokarev.

Sergey Tokarev underlines another purpose of the STEM is FEM project. It is about creating a community of like-minded individuals who will support and motivate each other.

Yuliia Tkachenko is one of those like-minded girls from STEM is FEM. Being in high school, she started to research drones. She found out that Bayraktar drones struggled to operate in bad weather conditions. So Yuliia came up with a solution to add a laser sight to the drone. In the 11th grade, she together with a professor from the National Aviation University developed a radar station for the Ukrainian military. Now Yuliia is a student at the Faculty of Economic Sciences at Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. She is also involved in an IT startup in the healthcare sector.

Sergey Tokarev exemplifies another community member, Nadiia Kasyanchuk. She is graduating from  Adam Mickiewicz University in Poland this year. Nadiia studies medical biotechnology and works with genomic data, specifically researching microbiome changes in patients with Parkinson’s disease. She is a co-author of 11 articles published in Scopus-indexed journals. Last year, Nadiia acquired four awards at international conferences in Germany, Moldova, Slovakia, and Latvia. She also teaches the course “Human Genetics & Society” at the Kyiv School of Economics.

The Roosh co-founder concludes that projects like STEM is FEM play a crucial role. They bring up a tremendous perspective for young girls to implement proper education as well as join powerful communities for women in STEM fields.

STEM is FEM was initiated by Ukrainian IT entrepreneur and co-founder of the investment group Roosh, Sergey Tokarev. In 2023, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine honored the project with the title “Honorary Ambassador of Ukraine in the field of scientific and educational diplomacy.”