You represent some of the brightest minds that are aiming at the brightest stars in the sky… Be the next women to take the reins and succeed!
Assistant Secretary Evan Ryan on girls in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics
Empowered girls grow up to be empowered women… They grow up to move their communities forward and make the world a better place.
Secretary Kerry on the International Day of the Girl, October 11, 2013
Public and Private Investments in Women and Girls Through the Equal Futures Partnership

April 18, 2013 - Washington DC., 2013 World Bank / IMF Spring Meetings. Equal Futures Partnership: Breaking Down Barriers to Women's Political and Economic Empowerment with World Bank Group President Jim Yong Kim; U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew, Senior Advisor to the President of the United States Valerie Jarrett, moderated by World Bank Group Managing Director Caroline Anstey. Photo: Ryan Rayburn / World Bank

About the Author: Wenchi Yu serves in the Secretary’s Office of Global Women’s Issues.

On April 18, 2013, President of the World Bank Group Jim Yong Kim co-hosted the second Equal Futures Partnership meeting, along with the U.S. Secretary of Treasury Jacob Lew, Senior Advisor to President Obama Valerie Jarrett, and National Economic Advisor to President Obama Gene Sperling on the margins of the World Bank Spring Meetings in Washington, D.C. The 13 founding members issued a report on progress made thus far, while six new country members joined the partnership with new commitments, and three more signaled intent to join at the next convening. Some of the new country… more »

Celebrating Girls in ICT Day

The U.S. Mission in Geneva collaborates with the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) on a program to celebrate Girls in ICT Day, which includes a series of technical workshops designed to give girls hands-on experience in programming computers, making films, designing mobile phone applications, and managing satellites, in Geneva, Switzerland, on April 25, 2013. [U.S. Mission Geneva photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Karen Glocer serves as an Economic Officer at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations in Geneva. She holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science.

On April 25, we celebrate Girls in ICT Day, established by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in 2010 to inspire girls to consider a career in technology. Women are half the world’s population and half the world’s talent, but there’s a persistent gender gap in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) field.

As a first tour economic officer with a Ph.D. in Computer Science, I’m thrilled to be able to use my background to contribute to the ITU program celebrating International Girls in Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Today, I taught 27 girls of ages between 13 and 17 the basics of programming in python, an intuitive, but powerful programming language that is widely used by software companies, research scientists, engineers, and universities. My goal… more »

International Day of Zero Tolerance to FGM: Working Together To End a Devastating Practice

A Masai girl holds a protest sign during the anti-Female Genital Mutilation (FGM) run in Kilgoris, Kenya, April 21, 2007. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Melanne Verveer serves as Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues.

On February 6, 2013, in observance of the tenth anniversary of the International Day of Zero Tolerance to Female Genital Mutilation, I had the privilege of leading a panel discussion at the State Department to help bring global attention to a harmful traditional practice that risks the lives, dignity, and well-being of women and girls in far too many places around the world. 

I was honored to be joined by such dedicated leaders and practitioners as Amina Salum Ali, Ambassador of the African Union to the United States; Dr. Nawal Nour, a Sudanese-American from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston; Bacary Tamba from Tostan, a non-governmental organization (NGO) in Senegal; and Jessie Hexpoor from Hivos, an NGO based in the Netherlands. They each have made, and are continuing to make, extraordinary contributions toward putting an end to female genital mutilation/cutting… more »

Taking the Lessons of Title IX Global—On the Court and In Life

Jessica Mendoza, U.S. Olympian and member of the State Department Council to Empower Women and Girls, leads clinics in Nicaragua as part of the State Department's global efforts to empower women and girls through sports, February 4, 2013. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Ann Stock serves as Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs.

February 6 marks the 27th National Day of Women and Girls in Sports.

Today in Esteli, Nicaragua, girls from under-served areas are on the softball diamond, fielding grounders, running out base hits, and learning how sports can improve their health and their performance in the classroom.

In Donetsk, Ukraine, girls were on the basketball court, looking for the outlet pass, grabbing rebounds, and working as a team.

In Knoxville, Tennessee, 12 young, female basketball players from Senegal recently concluded a 10-day international exchange.… more »

Afghan Girls Lead Peer Education

Dawn L. McCall, Coordinator of the Bureau of International Information Programs, meets with Afghan teenage girls training themselves in English and leading language classes for their younger peers in the Guzara district outside Herat, Afghanistan, December 2012. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Dawn L. McCall serves as Coordinator of the Bureau of International Information Programs.

The Internet may be important, but it’s not everything. In rural Afghanistan, courageous and talented young women who have never heard of the Internet are using skills today often associated with social media users — initiative, resourcefulness, and social connections — to make tangible contributions to their community.

During a recent visit to the Guzara district outside Herat, near Afghanistan’s western border with Iran, I saw teenage girls training themselves in English and leading language classes for their younger peers. These women worked with the Afghan Women Educational and Professional Improvement Organization, an ambitious organization housed in a sparsely furnished three-room office. This organization provides curriculum planning resources for teachers at a nearby girls’ school, study space for that school’s students, and — as the young, aspiring English… more »

A Small Gesture Fulfills a Bigger Promise: An Update From ‘Teen Teach’ in Afghanistan

Students pose before tents donated by PAX Academic Exchanges to be used as classrooms in Chaparhar, Afghanistan, 2012. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Anna Mussman serves as a Public Diplomacy Officer with Task Force Mountain Warrior in Jalalabad, Afghanistan.

It is no secret that when women and girls have the opportunity to pursue an education, they directly improve their communities and help entire societies grow. And sometimes, the goodwill and dedication of individual Americans, connected virtually through sites like Facebook, help girls in a rural district of Afghanistan realize their dreams of education and a better future.

As DipNote reported a few months ago, U.S. Embassy Kabul supports the “Teen Teach” program, where Afghan teenagers are trained and then have the chance to teach in classrooms of younger students.

In Chaparhar, a city in Nangarhar district, about 23 kilometers south of Jalalabad close to the eastern border of Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Shulani School participated in the “Teen Teach”… more »

London Olympics Make the Case for Unleashing the Potential of Women and Girls

United States' Missy Franklin, United States' Dana Vollmer, United States' Allison Schmitt and United States' Shannon Vreeland pose with their gold medals for the women's 4x200-meter freestyle relay swimming final at the Aquatics Centre in the Olympic Park during the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, on August 1, 2012. [AP Photo]

About the Author: Melanne Verveer serves as the Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues at the U.S. Department of State.

There’s been a lot of talk about how the London Olympics will best be remembered as the Women’s Olympics. Not only because of the individual performances of gymnast Gabby Douglas, or swimmer Missy Franklin, or heptathlete Jessica Ennis, but because of the collective achievements of women who participated in these London Games.

The statistics are amazing: Two thirds of the gold medals, and more than half of all medals won by Team USA, were won by American women. And this was despite the fact that women were eligible for 30 fewer medals than the men! The American women did not stand alone in leading their countries to the top of the medal tables. Women from China and Russia (#2 and #3 behind the U.S. in the total medal count), also took home more medals than their male counterparts.

Forty-four percent of all athletes at the games were women, and with the… more »

U.S. Strategy To Prevent and Respond to Gender-Based Violence Globally

Card signed by nearly 650 women and girls from around the United States and around the world thanking the U.S. government for prioritizing the response and prevention of gender-based violence globally. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Melanne Verveer serves as Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues.

On Friday August 10, the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) released the first ever U.S. Strategy to Prevent and Respond to Gender-based Violence Globally, including their implementation plans. An accompanying Executive Order issued by President Obama was also released, directing all relevant agencies to implement this strategy. These efforts highlight the United States’ commitment to preventing and responding to gender-based violence around the world.

Gender-based violence knows no bounds… more »