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Tech firms search for Africa's future disruptors

Tech firms search for Africa's future disruptors.

Multinational technology company Microsoft and Kenyan digital agency GreenBell Communications (GBC) have each launched a program aimed at the learning ecosystem in the hope of sourcing tech talent.

GBC is partnering with Kenya's Riara, Strathmore and Africa Nazarene Universities to recruit computer science students for the company's three month internship for mobile and web development.

Peterson Orandi, Digital Marketing Manager at GBC says the company's internship program, which begins in September, aims to inspire innovators by exposing them to the work environment where they can come up with disruptive ideas.

"We look to take in about fifteen interns in total and they will all receive a monthly stipend. We want to expand the program next year and into the future to more Universities. This is a tester to see how it goes and as of next year we will broaden the interns to other areas in the business in addition to the technical department."

GBC counts multinationals such as Barclays and Toyota in Kenya among clients for their Web design, hosting and development, internet marketing, mobile app development and backup services.

Orandi says the company's visit to Riara University yesterday proved successful and they hope for the same at Strathmore University on the West of Nairobi today and at Africa Nazarene University in during the final week of August.

"The students at Riara were very welcoming. We got to see what they are working on. They are working on very innovative projects especially when it comes to mobile applications and some of the apps they showed us can be useful to the university and broader community. The chances of these students being hired at the end of the program are very high because part of the program is to equip the students with skills for the work environment. We are happy to be able to integrate them into the work environment where they can continue to share their creative ideas."

In a separate initiative, but with the same objective, Microsoft is rounding off the collection of applications for its Microsoft Innovative Educator (MIE) Experts program for teachers in South Africa and Lesotho.

MIE Experts are global visionaries who pave the way in the effective use of technology for better learning and student outcomes, according to Microsoft.

"They help Microsoft to lead innovation in education and they advocate and share their thoughts on effective use of technology in education with peers and policy makers. They provide insight for Microsoft on new products and tools for education, and they exchange best practices as they work together to promote innovation in teaching and learning."

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