What is TechGirls Program?

A summer exchange TechGirls connects and supports the next generation of women leaders in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics by providing them access and opportunities to advance their skills and pursue their dreams.

In 2022, TechGirls expanded to include Mongolia as a participating country where up to three young Mongolian female students will be selected to participate in a dynamic four-week U.S.- based experience with a seven-month mentoring program (including pre- and post-exchange).

The scholarship covers:

  • Visa Fee
  • Roundtrip international airfare from participant home country to the United States
  • Housing during program
    • Double occupancy dormitory accommodations
  • Meals during program
    • Breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Local transportation to group program events
  • Cultural events organized by Legacy International
  • Emergency health insurance

The core of the program is a 27-day experience in the United States in partnership with Virginia Tech University.  TechGirls participate in an interactive technology and computer camp, then travel to one of the following cities (Austin, Chicago, and Denver or Cincinnati, Detroit, and Seattle) for job shadowing at a tech company, and homestay and community service experiences.  Upon in-person program completion, TechGirls implement at least one peer training program and service project at their schools and/or communities within 6 months of returning home.

TechGirls will have the opportunity to gain and apply new skills by immersing themselves in cutting edge STEM fields including:

  • Java
  • Web Development
  • Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Graphic Design
  • Data Science
  • Cybersecurity
  • Machine Learning
  • Molecular Modeling and Informatics
  • Electrical Engineering/Microprocessors
  • Python Programming

At TechGirls, we encourage youth leadership and responsibility and create an environment of trust. We clearly explain the schedule and expect TechGirls to be on time and ready for each activity.  The schedule created helps everyone get most out of the three-week intensive learning experience.

Supervision: TechGirls are supervised 24 hours a day. An environment is created to address problems and concerns swiftly. Staff assist youths with cultural adjustments, mentor and counsel as needed. Staff are First Aid and CPR certified to speedily address any health care needs.

Respect for all Religions: The TechGirls staff make sure that the students wishing to practice specific religious observances are given the space and opportunity to do so. The daily schedule is structured to allow for the five daily prayers for Muslims. On Fridays, we allow time for a longer prayer time at mid-day or for attendance at a congregational Jummah prayer. For those who attend regular Sunday services, we make arrangements for you. Regarding dietary rules, we make sure to carefully show each participant what is halal at buffets and try to arrange meals at halal restaurants when possible.

To qualify for TechGirls, applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a Mongolian citizen, currently living in Mongolia
  • Be between the ages of 15 and 17 at the start of the exchange on July 8, 2024
    • Otherwise born between July 9, 2006, and July 8, 2009
  • Have demonstrated advanced skills and a serious interest in technology, science, engineering, and/or math in their academic studies
  • Intend to pursue higher education and/or careers in STEM, especially technology
  • Have strong English language skills (advanced intermediate English skills)
  • Exhibit maturity, flexibility, and open-mindedness
  • Will attend at least one additional semester of secondary school upon their return to their home country
  • Are committed to completing a community-based project upon their return home

Preference will be given to those who have limited or no prior experience in the United States. You are not eligible if you have traveled to the United States in the last three years as part of any other ECA exchange program. 

Please note that family members of U.S. Embassy or Consulate staff or U.S. Department of State employees are not eligible to apply.

In order to apply for TechGirls, the applicant will follow the steps below:

  1. Register on the TechGirls Portal:
  2. Complete and submit the online application (Please note that all students must be registered with the portal in order to access the online application.)

A complete online application will have following attachments:

  • A portrait photograph
  • Academic transcript (in English; in case the transcript is issued in Mongolian upload an English translation by a certified translation service along with the original in Mongolian)
  • Passport (if applicable)

Submit the completed application and any supplemental documents via the online portal within the deadline.

Things to remember when completing the online application:

  • Complete ALL ANSWERS in English
  • Prior to applying, we urge all applicants to read our Eligibility and Application requirements
  • For essay questions, we recommend you write them in a Word Document first, and then paste them into the online form. All answers must within 100 – 350 words (maximum 1000 characters)
  • Essays must be your own work reflecting your original thought. Other people’s works/ideas used anywhere in the application must be properly noted
  • You can save your progress and return to the form by clicking the Save button located at the bottom of the Application. You can save progress as much as you wish until you are ready for final submission.
  • Once you are ready to submit the application, click Complete on the Dashboard. The program will return you back to the Application. If you select Complete at the bottom of the application it will attempt submission. If any required fields are incomplete, you will be directed to complete them prior to submission. Once you have submitted a Complete application, you will not be able to edit it afterwards.

All U.S. Government scholarship programs are merit-based. Although we take into account special circumstances of candidates such as disability, disadvantaged background, or any other notable characteristics, final decision is made based on the candidate’s overall strength as represented by the application quality and interview. We also consider one’s ability to be a cultural ambassador and his/her ability and motivation to give back to the community.

Following are the main steps for selection for TechGirls:

Technical Screening: This is the initial review to verify the completeness of the applications. During technical screening, we check to see two main things:

  • If applications and any required supplemental documents are complete
  • If applicants meet all the eligibility requirements

Application Review: After technical screening, all complete applications are then reviewed by an application review committee. During this process, each application gets to be reviewed by a minimum of three people.

Short List: Based on the recommendations of the application review committee, an interview short list is created. Candidates who are included in the short list are then invited for an in-person interview.

Interview: An interview panel will conduct short virtual interviews with all short-listed candidates and will select the finalists.

October – December: Program is announced and accepts online applications

February – March: Review of Application and Interview with selected applicants

April: All applicants will be notified of their application results via email

June – July: Pre-departure orientation

July: All students leave to the U.S.