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Stephanie Simon is a junior programmer and tech enthusiast hailing from Ruimveldt, Georgetown.
She is well-known for her work with STEMGuyana, as she coaches, and mentors youths at various STEM clubs. Currently, Stephanie is a civilian employed at the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) as a Junior Programmer/Engineer.
Stephanie was born on 26th May, 1997 to Fabia and the late Derick Simon at the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPHC) and grew up in their East Ruimveldt home, with her parents and siblings.
When asked about her childhood, Stephanie told this publication, “I grew up humble. My Mom always said be thankful for what God has given to you and still be thankful for what God has not given to you. Growing up had its challenges but there was nothing that I couldn’t overcome. I never gave up without a fight or until the fat lady sings.”
As it relates to her education, she attended Central High School, then St. Roses High, where she pursued a Diploma in Business Management at CAPE. Further, Stephanie holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from the University of Guyana and she is currently pursuing a master’s degree in Artificial Intelligence at the International University of Applied Sciences.
Currently, She is the Social Media Marketing Manager at Trifinity Solutions Inc., and an engineer / junior programmer at the Guyana Defence Force (GDF).
As a Social Media Manager, her role is to help clients to develop strategies and solutions to grow their businesses online.
Stephanie is also a Facilitator of Facebook Developer Circle: Georgetown and a tutor for the Computer Science Department at the University of Guyana.
She is a fearless STEM Enthusiast and Master Trainer of STEM Guyana – an NGO that prepares young people to use their creativity, brilliance, and innovative spirits to create technology solutions for problems in their community through Critical Thinking, Problem-Solving, Coding and Robotics.
As a master trainer at STEM Guyana, Stephanie coached the senior team representing Guyana at the 2020 International Youth Robotics Competition. In 2018, Simon was also one of the team members representing Guyana at the annual First Global robotics competition.
She has also been tutoring children in the foundation of robotics and programming. She is not only a STEM Guyana ambassador but a Master Trainer & Coach and ICT Trainer under The former First Lady of Guyana (Mrs. Sandra Granger) Outreach Programs.
In 2019, Stephanie was an instructor for Guyanese Girls Code, where she guided thirty girls to learn about Software Designing, Problem-Solving and Programming.
Further, Stephanie tutored over thirty (30) students in the Digital Innovation Summer Camp 2020 under Trifinity Solutions Inc and helped them to develop relevant soft skills in various areas such as: Problem-Solving, Story Telling, Graphics Designing, Critical Thinking and Coding.
She is also an instructor for the Guyanese Girls Code under the Office of the Prime Minister Department of Industry and Innovation Unit.
She is also an instructor of the Eco-naire Innovation Academy platform and a
Coordinator for StartupLabGY.
Stephanie was also the President of the Computer Science Tech-Ed Revolution Club and a member of the University of Guyana Robotics Club (U.G.R.C) which aims in promoting STEM education through fun activities and encourages students to use technology to solve 21st-century problems.
She added, “Being a young lady in STEM, I strongly believe that STEM Education plays a vital role in children’s lives for it can broaden the horizons of the mind. If you learn to think scientifically, you keep trying to implement new ways no matter how difficult it gets.”
Further, she stated, “The key to solving problems is to be innovative, always asking why, seeking the truth, and always being eager to explore more about how things work. Children should learn these skills. That is reason enough why youngsters should consider science and its perspective.”
Stephanie aspires to be a Machine Learning Engineer, where she would be able to create and program machines that are designed to perform specific tasks to support positive objectives to improve her country.
When asked why she opted for Computer Science instead of business, she said, “Despite being a business student, during high school, I never imagined myself taking up a career in the business realm at the time. Instead, I was always behind a computer fascinated with how it works, its structure and most of all, how I can make one.”
“My late father also was a great influence on me for choosing this field of tech, since he didn’t know how to use computers, I became his teacher. So, I decided, since I’m doing Business, I can sneak in Information Technology as a bonus subject. From doing that, it began opening a whole new world for me in the field of Technology,” she noted.
After graduating from Central High School, now known as The New Central High, she went on to pursue CAPE/‘A’ Level studies at St. Rose’s High School where she was awarded the best graduating student for Information Technology, despite being a Business student.
After high school, she went to the University of Guyana where she had the full advantage of pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science.
“Well for me, multitasking was never an issue, it was something I enjoyed doing. But I was always reminded to slow down and take breaks which never came over as simple for me to do. Hence, the nickname ‘Miss Busy’. If I start something, I must finish it. Time Management is very vital, whenever I’m between studies, volunteering and most of all work. People ask me how I do it. Well, it’s a matter of self-discipline, communication and scheduling your time accordingly,” added Stephanie when asked how she juggles studies, volunteering and work.
At a young age, she was a victim of stereotyping. She mentioned, “I was told at a young age that a girl in tech wouldn’t last for long because it is a male-dominated field. I was told I won’t be able to handle the pressures or challenges of it or if I could not afford the resources to drop the subject.”
However, she took those negative words and they fueled her drive.
She noted, “I never let resources stop me from my goal of studying Information Technology while in High School. Instead of not having a laptop at the time, I read books to empower me in the field of study and I used to borrow computers from people just to get my task done until I could afford one. It wasn’t an easy journey but I made it to the very end.”
Despite her lack of technological resources, her innate passion has allowed her to persist and experience achievements that shocked many of her observers- given her circumstances.
Stephanie is only 25, and there is already a long list of accomplishments that accompany her name.
She is a recipient of the 25 Influential Women Leader from Cerulean Inc.
In 2021, she was a Technologist of the year 2021 Nominees at STEMEDIA Inc. and she was recently named an Ignite Caribbean 2022 30 under 30 Changemaker/ Emerging Caribbean- American Leader.
Stephanie volunteers at STEMGuyana as a Master Trainer, Coach and Ambassador of STEM Guyana. She is also a Women Techmaker Ambassador of Guyana
Google Developer Groups and Co-Organizer & Co-Founder of STEMMY Conversations Podcast.
As well as being the Co-Founder of the University of Guyana Robotics Club (UGRC) and CS Tech Ed Rev Club Project. She served as the Coordinator for INNOV8-HER
When she is not busy in the field of STEM, and academics, she pursues learning different languages, as she is passionate about that. She also pursues martial arts, swordsmanship, gaming and cultural astronomy.
Stephanie enjoys learning about Chinese traditional and modern culture, as such she is currently enrolled as a student learning mandarin at the Confucius Institute at the University of Guyana.
“Don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” is a quote that Stephanie believes in.