Saudi’s SDAIA, Google Cloud launch ‘Elevate’ to empower women in AI & ML

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Official Reporter
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Saudi Data and Artificial Intelligence Authority (SDAIA) has entered into a partnership with Google Cloud in order to empower women globally to pursue careers in artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML).

The “Elevate” initiative, unveiled during the Global AI Summit, will focus on empowering women in emerging markets by training more than 25,000 women over the next five years.

According to the statement, “The program offers a four-month curriculum developed in collaboration with Google Cloud, where participants will have access to free training sessions designed to train them with the skills and experience needed for roles like cloud architect, data engineer, machine learning engineer, or cloud business specialist.”

The program will also provide mentorship from industry experts at Google Cloud and SDAIA. The college students and graduates with a background in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) have the opportunity to apply for the program.

While the global AI industry has grown at a rapid pace, women remain underrepresented. “Today, women represent 12 percent of global AI researchers and 8 percent of professional software developers globally,” according to a UNESCO study. The study also revealed that only one-fifth of employees in technical roles in major ML companies are women.

Ms. Rehab Alarfaj, SDAIA’s Initiatives General Manager said that, “Through this initiative, SDAIA and Google Cloud will provide accessible training to women in tech and science who are interested in pursuing a career in AI and ML, so that they are better equipped to pursue the growing number of job opportunities in this field.  Elevate strives to close the gender gap in STEM fields, particularly in emerging markets.”

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