Our Mission

“Every member of our workforce, especially women, should be encouraged to reach their full potential in order to keep Hawaii in pace with the changing technological landscape.”  

329792_10150342833638652_1085273421_o– U.S. Senator Daniel Inouye

In 1999, the Maui Economic Development Board (MEDB) created the Women in Technology (WIT) Project to work in partnership with educators and businesses to build and strengthen Hawaii’s science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education-to-workforce pipeline.

To accomplish this, WIT strives to motivate under-utilized resources such as women and minorities toward technology-related fields.  According to the latest national studies, women represent the largest under-utilized national resource of great potential in science and technology.

Data suggests that to maintain the present number of scientists and engineers in the U.S., enrollment and retention of women and ethnic minorities in these fields must rise from less than 25% to 75% over the next 40 years.

For the past decade, WIT has been at the forefront of inspiring and providing cutting-edge STEM education across the islands to meet those 21st century workforce demands.

Growing the WIT initiative statewide

During the past decade, the WIT Project has successfully developed an outstanding cohort of K-12 programs that have been engaging students in STEM through:

  • Hands-on, service based learning
  • Job shadowing
  • Mentoring
  • Internships

Wherever relevant, cultural elements that help students respect and honor Hawaii’s deep-rooted native traditions and environmental values are integrated into the program.

In 2008, WIT expanded its flagship STEM service learning initiative from Maui across the state with great success.  Since then, WIT has developed a number of best practice models that have been adapted by forward-thinking communities in other states. 

Educating the educator

Educating the educator has been an underpinning of the Project’s success, from our early teacher workshops on Maui to our annual schedule of professional development curriculum currently offered across the state.

Today Hawaii’s teachers and in turn, their students, are learning to solve real world renewable energy problems in the classroom, by combining the hands-on activities, and state-of-the-art tech software such as GIS/GPS, CAD software with the latest information on sustainable practices.