ALX, Africa’s leading technology training provider, aims to equip over two million youth across the continent with technology skills that will prepare them for the dynamic world of work and equip them to provide innovative solutions to business challenges. Africa. This was announced as ALX Nigeria welcomed over 400 new learners at the Karibu “welcome” ceremony held on Saturday, October 21 at the Vantage Point Event Centre, Ogba, Lagos. The event was held to formally welcome and onboard new learners and aspiring technicians aged between 18 and 34 years across Nigeria and Africa into the ALX community.
In his welcome speech, ALX Founder and CEO Fred Swaniker congratulated the new learners. He stressed that Africa is still lagging behind in its efforts to prepare young people for the skills of tomorrow. He expressed his concerns: “While China has 7 million professional software engineers, the United States has more than 4 million and India has more than 2 million, Africa has less than 700,000 .” He noted that the world is changing rapidly and is dynamic and that the African education system is no longer preparing young people for the future of work. He implored new learners to take advantage of the opportunity provided by ALX to improve their lives.
The Karibu event is the second of its kind following the inaugural launch held in May with over 5,000 learners successfully integrated into the ALX technology community. The ceremony brought together diverse stakeholders and innovators from the technology sector, including investors, technopreneurs, business leaders, technology journalists and influencers, ALX Fellows as well as current and new ALX learners. Prominent participants included the Head of Partnerships for the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund (LSETF), Sherifah Balogun; principal of Wellspring College, Innocent Agofure; FSDH Human Resources Director, Omotoso Oluwasegun; and representatives from the Mastercard Foundation and the African Leadership University.
Managing Director of ALX Nigeria and moderator of the event, Ruby Igwe, called on new learners to demonstrate commitment and passion towards their programs and adopt a positive attitude to complete their training with ALX. She highlighted the many opportunities available to them by listening to testimonials from current learners and ALX graduates and fellows. Igwe emphasized that ALX programs aim to transform young learners into visionary technology leaders and employable graduates. Some of the programs offered at ALX include data analytics, cloud computing, software engineering, and Salesforce administration.
During the panel discussion, ALX Fellows discussed the many benefits new learners can gain from their programs. They drew attention to the cutting-edge skills and opportunities created by ALX. “The impact of ALX on my life and career goals has been overwhelming. The out-of-the-box technical skills I learned came in handy and helped me land a dream job at a top fintech company,” said Daniel Ugama, a successful graduate of ALX Cloud Computing. “As you embark on your technology journey with ALX, rest assured that you are learning from the best. The platforms are very attractive, innovative and user-friendly. I am confident you will have a great experience,” he added. He urged new learners to take their program very seriously and avoid practices that could lead to their dropping out.
ALX Salesforce Administrator graduate Chisom Ukachukwu highlighted ALX’s high success rate due to its focus on shared literacy and community engagement. “Without the community, I wouldn’t have gotten this far in the program. At ALX, you are not left alone. There is a deliberate attempt to create a peer review system and a community dynamic that motivates you to be the best,” she said. She expressed her gratitude to ALX Nigeria for giving her the chance to participate in the Salesforce program and for sparking her interest in becoming a technology entrepreneur.
Speaking at the expert panel session, Digivate 360 CEO Olusegun Oyetunji praised the growing enthusiasm and interest in technology among young people in Africa. “Over the past two decades, we have made bold strides in creating new technologies. We are pioneers in local solutions in electronic technology, hydropower technology and many other areas. It is worth noting that a technopreneur in Africa can obtain up to $40 million in financing to supply electricity to small households across Africa. This is a testament to our potential and growth,” he said. He explained that as Africa steps up its efforts in innovation and creativity, it must focus on creating solutions rather than dwelling on problems. “To achieve this, we must understand that community engagement is crucial to driving innovation. We must eliminate individualism and collaborate to attract opportunities,” he insisted.
A unique feature of the hybrid event was Global Sync, during which new learners could connect with other ALX learners across Africa via a live-streamed video call. ALX has technology hubs in Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Rwanda and South Africa. Also present was a community of learners and fellows from 28 states across Nigeria who joined virtually to the delight of the on-site participants.
For over 4 years, ALX has been working across Africa to provide young people with in-demand skills to close the knowledge gap. In addition to its wide range of technology programs, it hosts impactful activation events throughout the year. Over 100 young women from the ALX Nigeria community were recently supported to attend the SHECODE Summit 2023 for in-depth technology-related sessions and networking opportunities. ALX uses innovative learning tools and transformative mentoring methods, creating a community of ethical digital leaders.