Right now, software programmers are the second most sought after professionals in the world. What’s more, there seems to be a tech talent crunch. This means there is a shortage of talents in one of the most defining areas of humanity’s future. I reckon then, that introducing technology and computer studies to kids, geared towards present and future developments, will be a step in the right direction for Africa.
With the increase in internet accessibility and digitization, we can take advantage. Africa’s youthful population is a strength. From 2000 to 2015, Africa has experienced a 6,839.1% growth in internet users. About 313.2 million Africans have access to the internet. Now, when compared with the continent’s 1.5 billion population, it’s small. But the growth rate is encouraging. Child population in Africa is around 447 million. Juxtaposing these figures, you’ll find that there is massive potential here.
Early adoption of programming skills and a specific language is key to getting this young population actually interested in the software revolution. In UK, children are taught about algorithms and coding through fun methods such as participatory computer games. The UK is the first G20 country to include computer science as a vital part of school curriculum.
While Programming doesn’t look like such an appealing career path, especially for a kid, it can be introduced as a hobby. A rather important hobby. If it can be introduced and attached to exciting children’s activities, then it will be embraced.
Already, in Africa, technology/programming as a career is competing with music, politics, religion and let’s not forget the usual suspects – law, financial services, medicine etc. So, kids have to see it as a viable, fun and rewarding option.
Africa’s success in achieving this would secure the continent’s voice in the future.

Photo Credit: Alachua County Library District via Compfight cc

David Adeleke Author

Get the best African tech newsletters in your inbox