Raising aspirations for women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

I came to the University of Portsmouth from Ghana to study a BSc in Advanced Dental Nursing. When I was a little girl, I knew that I wanted to be in a profession where I could care for people and put smiles on their faces. After reading about dental nursing, I saw it as a great opportunity to realise and harness my dream. One of the many great things about dental nursing is that I get to experience hands on training whilst studying and I also get the opportunity to provide care for the local community as a part of the dental team.

I have heard about the women in STEM campaign and think that it's great. Absolutely nothing should prevent women from going into STEM careers and courses if they want to. I think that from the first stages of education girls should be encouraged, supported, and urged to pursue careers in STEM just as it is for boys.

If there was one message that I could send to all the young girls in Ghana it would be that you can be whatever you dream of being; once you think of becoming, you can become. Pursue your dreams, go for that career, take that course, and together we will make it happen, making the world a better place. There's a famous quote by Dr James Emman Kwegyir Aggrey that has always stuck with me – 'if you educate a man, you educate an individual but when you educate a woman, you educate a whole nation'. This is why women in STEM is so important to me.

This blog post was written by Cynthia Bleboo, Ghana.