The Ekiti State Government in collaboration with TechCabal Insights and Utiva on August 6, 2022 held the Demo Day to graduate the inaugural cohort of 50 successful participants of the Ekiti Software Development Programme 1.0 and showcase their projects, following a rigorous 4-month learning experience.
With the mission of training and providing a path to new jobs for young people and creating a tech hub in Ekiti State, the talent development program trained young residents from the 16 local governments across the state on frontend and backend development, UI/UX design and employability skills using a hybrid delivery model.
The Demo Day event at the state capital, Ado-Ekiti, was attended by top government officials and key stakeholders from the academia and private sector. Goodwill messages were delivered to the graduating trainees by Hon. Akintunde Oyebode, the Commissioner for Finance and Economic Development; Prof. Olu Olatunji, Director of ICT, Ekiti State University (EKSU); and Ms. Adedamola Ajibade, Director General of Ekiti Development and Investment Promotion Agency (EKDIPA).
In his keynote address, Hon. Akintunde Oyebode, talked about Ekiti’s knowledge economy and how the software development programme fits into the progress made so far. According to him, developing the state’s tech talent pool is key to growing the economy and at the center of enabling policies for the availability of investors and jobs. “And all of you who have completed this training are the proof of concept of this investment,” he said.
During the Ekiti Software Development Programme, all participants were divided into 6 groups to work on capstone projects and develop them as tech startups under the supervision of the tutors. At the event, each group presented the pitch of their projects to a panel of state government functionaries for feedback and reviews.
Group 1, led by Kayode Adetifa, developed and presented a civic-tech platform and e-voting system to enhance civic participation in the state. Group 2, led by Obembe Sunday Dapo, pitched an e-commerce platform, E-mart, to bridge the market gap for buying and selling of products. Group 3, led by Fasakin Adeniyi, developed a platform to digitize access to healthcare services.
Group 4, led by Olabiyi Oluwaferanmi, built PathToPro, a cloud library of books for tech enthusiasts with the aim of reaching every individual interested in programming in the state. Group 5, led by Muheez Adeagbo, developed a logistics website named, Dynamt Logistics, to connect the supply and delivery chains of items for users in the state. Group 6, led by Owolabi Nifemi, also developed FarmConnect, an agric-tech platform, to connect Ekiti local farmers to investors within and outside the state.
Chinedu Louis Igbelina, who was named the best performing and most consistent student, expressed his gratitude for the training opportunity. “I’m practicing everyday non-stop,” Igbelina said, when asked how he hopes to continuously apply his skills after the bootcamp. “And at the same time apply for and secure an internship place so I can put those skills to good use.”
Adebayo Oluwatobi Adeleke, who was also recognized as the most collaborative and engaged student at the coding bootcamp, equally expressed his excitement, saying he couldn’t be more honoured to be an alumnus. “The experience of working with people with different ideas was really amazing, as it gave me more knowledge about teamwork. I hope to continue pushing applying what I learnt and also to go deeper in the tech space,” Adeleke said.
The Ekiti State Coding Bootcamp was piloted to address the lack of relevant skills training and access to entry-level opportunities for young people in Ekiti State and to meet the demand for tech talent. According to Quartz Africa, experts say governments and companies must act as stakeholders towards working together on increasing access to tech skills training and connect young developers to job opportunities for economic development.
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