Female Afghan pilot drops by to motivate students
When the former Afghan refugee experienced hours of turbulence while flying, she reminded herself of the initiative she founded, Dreams Soar.
Miss Shaesta Waiz (in photo), 30, travels to promote education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (Stem). She is the first civilian female pilot from Afghanistan and the first in her family to earn a master's degree.
On May 13, she set off from Florida on her solo flight around the world, which will cover a total of 46,300km. Singapore is her 13th stop.
Yesterday, Miss Waiz met students from Changkat Changi Secondary School for a talk.
Dreams Soar is also fund-raising for scholarships for children interested in pursuing Stem or aviation.
Miss Waiz said: "Our future is Stem-oriented, and it is male-dominated. We need to entice women to pursue these careers because they bring fresh insights."
A survey in December last year revealed that 68 per cent of teenage girls in six Asia-Pacific countries are not interested in Stem subjects.
A recipient of several scholarships, Miss Waiz said: "It is one thing to inspire someone, but you have to enable them too. Giving someone a small amount can give them hope."