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OLAY and Coursera Launch Cosmetic Science Specialization to Bridge The Gender Gap in STEM

OLAY and Coursera Launch Cosmetic Science Specialization to Bridge The Gender Gap in STEM

OLAY will award $2 million worth of scholarships for learners interested in cosmetic sciences

Dubai, UAE – 14 March 2024: OLAY, a worldwide leader in skincare, has announced the launch of a new Specialization on Coursera, a global online learning platform. The Introduction to Cosmetic Science and Ingredients is OLAY’s first Specialization on the platform and is designed to educate learners on skincare fundamentals and encourage more learners, especially women and women of color, to enter the cosmetic science field.

Coursera’s partnership with OLAY comes at an important time for careers in STEM. As of 2023, women’s representation remains low, comprising one-quarter of the overall STEM workforce. The new cosmetic science Specialization is the first of a series of STEM Specializations from OLAY that reflect OLAY’s commitment to doubling the number of women in STEM and tripling the number of women of color in STEM by 2030.

To bolster this effort, OLAY and Coursera will provide $2 million in scholarships over three years for the course to anyone interested in cosmetic science. From 2024 – 2026, 5,000 recipients will receive a one-year subscription to Coursera Plus, which also includes more than 6,900 courses, as well as entry-level Professional Certificates and hands-on projects that teach job-relevant business, technology, and data science skills. Women and women of color are encouraged to apply.

The new Specialization is taught by OLAY’s in-house cosmetic scientists, including Dr. Rolanda Wilkerson, who has an extensive background in researching emerging skin and hair science. With a deep understanding of women’s skin and hair needs, Dr. Wilkerson’s work has been used to improve the formulas of Procter & Gamble’s most popular cosmetic products.

“OLAY is committed to positively impacting the STEM pipeline and supporting all women in STEM. This is why we are excited to collaborate with Coursera to put STEM education within reach for both current and aspiring STEM learners,” said Dr. Wilkerson. “Whether you are a skin care enthusiast or someone considering cosmetic science as a career, anyone, anywhere can now learn the basics of skin care from OLAY scientists with the new ‘Introduction to Cosmetic Science and Ingredients’ course.”

Introduction to Cosmetic Science and Ingredients will ground learners in the history of the cosmetic industry while helping them understand key ingredients in various cosmetic products and how they affect the biological structure of the skin. By the end of the four-course program,  learners will be able to understand:

  • Skin physiology and how to create a model of the skin
  • Skin care, skin concerns, and how to identify effective skin care ingredients
  • Fundamental approaches and best practices to create innovative and sustainable cosmetic formulations
  • Best practices and ways to implement cosmetic quality control and safety methods

Learners who complete the program and apply to Procter and Gamble beauty roles are encouraged to acknowledge their cosmetic science certificate during the application process.

With OLAY’s commitment to inclusivity in STEM, Coursera is thrilled to welcome them to Coursera’s partner community and join them in helping open more doors to cosmetic sciences.


About Coursera

Coursera was launched in 2012 by two Stanford Computer Science professors, Andrew Ng and Daphne Koller, with a mission to provide universal access to world-class learning. It is now one of the largest online learning platforms in the world, with 142 million registered learners as of December 31, 2023. Coursera partners with over 325 leading university and industry partners to offer a broad catalog of content and credentials, including courses, Specializations, Professional Certificates, Guided Projects, and bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Institutions around the world use Coursera to upskill and reskill their employees, citizens, and students in fields such as data science, technology, and business. Coursera became a Delaware public benefit corporation and a B Corp in February 2021.

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