Local tech experts have urged the youth to pursue digital skill training for them to be problem solvers, but also earn a living from new technologies.
“Everybody, whether young or old now, knows how important technology is becoming. Covid-19 became an eye opener. For the Mastercard foundation, we made a quick decision to help youth in giving them digital training. Technology is not generational, not for the youth only, everyone should be aware that technology is the only way these days,” Ruth Mukakimenyi, Program Partner, Mastercard Foundation said.
“The digital skill awareness can be best established in schools. Young people are eager to learn, discover and have curiosity of how things work digitally. They are eager to find various digital applications in the phone.”
She added that the pace of development in the country will depend on how young ones are transforming their minds towards digital literacy.
The tech experts made this observation during EdTech, a program held on 27 September 2021 via KT radio.
EdTech Monday Rwanda is a Mastercard Foundation and ICT Chamber initiative that aims to spark the EdTech Ecosystem in Rwanda. The initiative brings together EdTech stakeholders, including EdTech entrepreneurs, Education, and technology policymakers, and EdTech consumers to discuss how to tap into the power of technology to increase learning outcomes.
EdTech Monday Rwanda discussions take place on KT Radio every last Monday of the month and the participating audience differs depending on the topic of the day.
This month, the discussions centered on “The future of EdTech towards job creation.”
“With huge digital skills, the youth will be able to discover challenges and be problem solvers, this will continue to facilitate the development in the country. This is a long journey but with the partnership of different stakeholders and the government, a lot can be achieved,” Mukakimenyi added.
The Ed Tech discussions came at an important time when the country is still dealing with challenges caused by Covid-19 and the measures put in place to support continual learning during the pandemic including online learning, radio, and television learning.
For several years now, Rwanda has intensified efforts to become a center for high-tech innovation and creativity in Africa.
For example, in Kigali city, smart technology is being used in schools, hospitals and public city transport (tap-and-go payments).
In the health sector, for over five years now, Rwanda is using drones to deliver blood to hospitals.
“The technology challenges still exist, ranging from internet costs and inadequate skills. How to solve them is getting close to the youth and training them how different tech programs work. This gives them confidence but also opens their eyes,” Monique Ekisa, programs coordinator at the Harambee Rwanda, a local tech firm said.
Last month, the Ministry of education said that about 85% of schools across the country will be connected to internet in the next two years, the model that is expected to revolutionize education into an ICT-based sector.
Currently, internet connectivity stands at 52%.
“The pandemic brought problems, but also opportunities and some of the chances is what people can earn from technology. Rwandans knew education technology as things for overseas. Today we all know that it can equally work for us too,” Amos Mfitundinda, the Priority Skills Development Program Specialist at RDB said.
“In Rwanda Development Board, we do needs assessments and train people depending on the needed skills on labour market. After getting results, we conduct campaigns to train people using experts,” Mfitundinda noted.