Kenyan Students Shine at the Huawei ICT Competition Global Final
Kenyan students emerged among the World’s best at the Huawei ICT Competition Global Final, taking top prizes at an online awards ceremony held this weekend. One team from Kenya shared the First Prize in the Network Track and another shared 3rd Prize.
Catherine Wambui from Multimedia University of Kenya is a member of the winning Kenyan team at the Global Final. She encouraged more students at University & College to join the ICT Competition as it is highly practical “The Competition has really enabled me to get practical skills and knowledge in my field of Networking. It has also helped improve my Team work, I encourage my fellow students to take part in the ICT Competition to test and sharpen their ICT Skills”
The students’ achievement is due to Kenya’s continued efforts to build a competitive ICT talent pool among the youth, who will be an indispensable accelerator for the continent’s post-COVID recovery and digitization.
The victorious students had a good reason to rejoice after over 10 months of hard work and fierce competition all the way from national screening contests, the Regional final, and the Global final. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all the training and competition activities were completed online.
The ICT Competition has also diversified to include an Innovation Competition that enables students at University to develop innovative solutions towards solving existing global challenges. The innovation competition focuses on Internet of Things (IoT), Artificial Intelligence (AI) & Cloud technologies.
Dianarose Nasipwonyi, who led a Kenyan Team and participated in the first Innovation Competition in Africa, expressed appreciation to Huawei for the opportunity to join the innovation competition this year alongside UK, Singapore, China and Spain. “During the development of our Mazingira Team Project I have learnt a lot on the Huawei AI & Cloud platform. The experience has really made me into a better innovator and has increased my skills. I hope to develop solutions for Africa with this new found knowledge.”
Over the past five years, Huawei has signed cooperation agreements with over 250 universities in 14 Sub-Saharan countries, including Nigeria, Kenya, and South Africa. This cooperation has enabled more than 7,000 university students to obtain Huawei ICT certification, which makes them better candidates for ICT-related jobs. As the host of the ICT Competition, Huawei has invested heavily in mobilizing African students, holding 300 campus roadshows with a total of 50,000 students participating. The competition-related training has helped over 300 students receive job offers.
Mr. Hou Tao, Global Vice President of Huawei, highlighted the impressive enthusiasm of the students, which is much needed to for Africa’s digital inclusion in the era when the gravity of workplace skills is already shifting online. “As a private company serving the African market for over 20 years, Huawei has dedicated itself to and will always remain a trusted partner of governments and academia in building a competitive ICT talent pool, strengthening capacity building and increasing people’s digital skills,” said Mr. Hou.
Despite being the newest contestants of Huawei ICT Competition since 2017, African students have made stunning progress this year. In 2019, only five African teams made it to the global final and reaped only one third prize, compared with 13 teams this year, winning a total of seven medals.
High-rank officials from UNESCO also spoke highly of Huawei’s partnership with UNESCO in fostering the digital skills of African youth, and its ongoing efforts to leverage advanced ICT technologies to drive digital transformation around the world.
This year’s Huawei ICT Competition attracted nearly 150,000 students from over 2,000 universities in over 82 countries. 327 students from 39 countries participated in the online global final, making it scale the largest so far. Teams from Zambia, Lesotho, and South Africa also reached the global final.