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Cadence Reunites With WITU To Empower Young Women

Tuesday, 21 May 2024 09:30 AM

By monicafa Community Member

NORTHAMPTON, MA / ACCESSWIRE / May 21, 2024 / Cadence's seven-year partnership with Team4Tech has given our employees unique opportunities to harness the power of technology and engage in a three-month philanthropic project to improve the livelihood of communities in need. In Fall 2023, this partnership allowed Cadence to reunite with a former Team4Tech project nonprofit partner, Women in Technology Uganda (WITU), on yet another transformative project!

Cadence first got involved with WITU in 2019 through another Team4Tech volunteer project.  Nick Heaton, Distinguished Engineer in the Cadence Bracknell Office, was a part of this initial team. After the project, he stayed involved with WITU, got them registered for Cadence's donation matching program, and organized a microloan fund geared towards helping women start their own businesses. Nick went on to champion a Cadence internship program explicitly geared towards women in Uganda. This went well; four women are now Cadence employees, and two new interns have just been onboarded.

We were pleased to have built upon our collaboration with WITU last Fall with a $25,000 impact grant. In November 2023, a global group of ten dedicated Cadence employees representing five different business units and 10 different offices in four countries wrapped up another exciting and impactful Team4Tech project with WITU, which aimed to empower young Ugandan women through technology and entrepreneurship.

The Cadence volunteers in the Fall 2023 project collaborated virtually for ten weeks and then spent two intensive weeks on-site at WITU's office and a local high school in Kampala, Uganda. The project was divided into three impactful sub-teams, each focusing on a specific area. The first sub-team developed a new website, the WITU Digital Jobs Center, to connect WITU women with employment opportunities. The second sub-team planned and organized a hackathon event at a local high school to get students excited about coding and STEM, including creating materials to help WITU repeat this with other schools they serve. The third sub-team focused on building a Makerspace for WITU with hands-on tech learning opportunities, including 3D printers, virtual reality, and Micro:Bit electronics. Through a train-the-trainer approach and by developing comprehensive systems and guides, the volunteers worked to ensure the impact is sustainable.

The volunteers formed strong bonds across the different Cadence business units and geographies, bringing our One Cadence-One Team culture to life. They developed lasting friendships with each other and with the inspiring women of WITU. On a personal level, the volunteers found the project incredibly fulfilling, and some said it was life-changing. The volunteers gained perspective about using their skills and opportunities to help others. Professionally, they grew as leaders, practicing skills such as customer-centric innovation, decision-making amidst ambiguity, and a growth mindset. 

Opportunities like this embody Cadence's core values. We are committed to providing our employees with volunteer opportunities for professional growth and leadership development, and we are incredibly proud to partner with organizations such as WITU and Team4Tech.

Watch this short video and read on to see how this trip impacted some of this project's participants:

"I decided to volunteer because I wanted an opportunity to learn new skills and directly help my community…I have explored a new culture, viewed different perspectives, and ultimately helped young women realize their full potential." - Abella Acomo, Assoc. Project Coordinator, LinkedIn Post

"I am very grateful to the WITU team for this incredible collaboration…I learned a lot from this amazing experience and expanded my leadership skills, especially as the manager of a young team of software engineers working within a large organization like Cadence." - Adronis Niyonkuru, Sr. Software Engineering Manager, LinkedIn Post

"When I joined the volunteer program, I thought I'd be just sharing my knowledge, but it was the other way around, too… I got a chance to come out of my comfort zone and have meaningful conversations with various people and know their perspectives." - Deepika Sangwan, Software Engineer II,  LinkedIn Post

"This project has helped me become a better person, to test myself in making decisions under ambiguity, and to share the joy of learning with these young women. I hope I made a small difference in the big work that WITU is already doing." - Dipin Sawlani, Lead Design Engineer, LinkedIn Post

"The inclusive language chosen by not only WITU but also the Team4Tech and other Cadence partners on site demonstrated their selfless allegiance to spread education in an accessible way. By sharing knowledge in simple terms, communication and collaboration was scaffolded to be adaptable to everyone with different backgrounds, baseline knowledge, and experience." - Liliko Uchida, Application Engineer, LinkedIn Post

"This project helped me gain mutual respect for different cultures and workstyles, develop clear communication to resolve ambiguities and create an awareness of uncertainties. From the beginning, I knew this was more than a trip; it was a growth journey, building trust among a diverse group and decision-making in uncertain situations." - Ning Zhao, Principal Product Engineer, LinkedIn Post

"I am incredibly grateful to have contributed to this Team4Tech project with WITU and witnessed the immense talent among these women, with whom I fostered remarkable relationships throughout this project. I do not doubt that WITU will continuously expand upon the Makerspace, allowing more women in Kampala to actualize their brilliant ideas and propel innovation in the community."  - Nourin Haque, Application Engineer, LinkedIn Post

To learn more about WITU's work and ways you can support its mission, visit its  website.

View additional multimedia and more ESG storytelling from Cadence Design Systems on

Contact Info:
Spokesperson: Cadence Design Systems
Email: [email protected]

SOURCE: Cadence Design Systems

Environmental, Social and Governance
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