18 students emerge as winners at the 2024 Huawei ICT Competition

18 Kenyan students emerged as winners in the 2023-2024 Huawei ICT Competition and will get a chance to go to China for the global final. The 18 were awarded out of the almost 6,000 who entered the competition.

Other than the trip to China, the students also got cash prizes and Huawei products whilst other awards were given out for lecturers and women in technology whilst 21 students got internship and job offers.

The Huawei ICT Competition, initiated in 2015 as part of the Huawei ICT Academy is a collaborative effort to enrich the ICT talent pool by transferring the latest knowledge from a global technology leader. The 2023-2024 edition featured four distinct tracks: cloud, computing, network, and innovation, reflecting Huawei’s dedication to diverse technological fields.

Hon. Ezekiel Machogu, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Education, said, “The Ministry of Education is fully aware of the importance of using technology in teaching, and in producing a workforce with high technology skills. We are very pleased to see the outcomes of partnerships with industry such as Huawei and Safaricom, as well as international organisations such as UNESCO, to support training of lecturers and students in the high-end ICT skills such as internet of things (IOT), artificial intelligence and cloud computing to address the skills gap in the ICT sector. Today we recognize some of the best ICT talent in the country through awarding the winners of the Huawei ICT Competition. This is a noble initiative that brings the latest curriculum and knowledge to our students and then also gives them opportunities to gain more international exposure and internships – both of which are very important, and very complementary to what the students get at University. I wish to appreciate Huawei for this, and acknowledge the great achievement of the competition in attracting 5,800 Kenyans to take part from over 40 Universities nationwide.”

“I would like to extend my deepest gratitude to the Ministry of Education for working with us to ensure the success of this ICT competition enabling young people to build their skills and promote innovation. We all need to continue this important work to ensure we create value from the Digital Superhighway paving the path for youth around the country to have a brighter future.” Gavin Gao, CEO Huawei Kenya said in the ceremony.

The award ceremony took place as part of a National ICT Talent Summit of University & ICT Industry stakeholders including Safaricom and UNESCO to discuss ways of enhancing the teaching of, and use of, emerging ICT technologies in higher education. Various institutions such as Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Kibabii University and Africa Nazarene University shared successful cases of how they have incorporated Industry Certification learning into their existing undergraduate programs to equip students with the right skills for the digital economy.

Ms Donna Rege, Senior Manager IT Business & Government and Women In Technology (WIT) Lead, Safaricom in her speech noted that: “In matters capability development, WIT and Huawei has had several collaborations: Self learning, Mentorship & coaching, and Training. I congratulate and appreciate Huawei for the intentionality and consistency in the capacity building agenda of this country and moreover around Women as reflected in this year’s cohort where women students grew from 13% last year to 21% this year. As Safaricom, we commit to continue working together, and we call upon more industry players – private and public, academia to come on board.”

In Kenya, Huawei has established ICT Academies in over 50 universities and colleges, providing access to cutting-edge technology training in networking, cloud computing, 5G, and AI. Annually, these academies train over 4,000 students, contributing significantly to the ICT skills landscape. The Huawei hardware installation base in Kenya has been recognized by the Ministry of ICT Innovation and Youth Affairs, playing a pivotal role in nurturing Kenya’s ICT talent pool and supporting national development initiatives.