By Prince Osuagwu
Frontline technology company, Cisco, has expressed confidence that Nigeria would lead Africa in digital revolution as its Networking Academies, NetAcads, in Nigeria, hit 200, making the country the highest host of Cisco NetAcads in Africa.
At a roundtable session, weekend at Federal Science and Technical College, Yaba, Lagos, where NetAcad Demo took place, Cisco said Nigeria has become a launch pad to spread the gospel of NetAcad.
Taught in 180 countries with 10,400 academies globally, the Cisco NetAcad has impacted the lives of 9.2 million students. It has also shaped communities and economies around the globe; creating a pipeline of technical talent ready to innovate and shape the future.
Founded in 1998, the Cisco Networking Academy is a comprehensive e-learning program that provides an expanding community of students, employers, educators’, NGOs and employees with the requisite technical and entrepreneurial skills required to transform the world for the better.
The event and demo session which had in attendance Francine Katsoudas, Chief People Officer, Cisco and other senior executives of Cisco, provided an opportunity for NetAcad students to demonstrate their trainings so far. Demos showcased included a smart IoT solutions system, the assembling of a computer by students from Queens and Kings College, Lagos. Other interesting demos included a robotics demo by NetAcad students who won the National Robotics Competition as well as a demo from the runner-up of the 2019 Cisco Global Problem Solver Challenge, who won a sum of $10,000 for their REALDRIP solution.
General Manager of Cisco Nigeria and West Africa, Olakunle Oloruntimehin, said: “At Cisco, we have come to understand that technology is truly powerful when combined with education. We are proud to say that for over 20 years, the Cisco Networking Academy has impacted the lives of over nine million students globally. Our courses are designed to mold technical talents and hone our students’ skills for innovation in digitization. In partnership with a number of educators and instructors at 200 academies in Nigeria, we are constantly working to deliver the best curricula to help train these students”.
At the roundtable session Cisco unveiled a three-year partnership with international advocacy organization, Global Citizen, to power the movement to end extreme poverty. The partnership involves the company’s commitment to funding and technology to help end poverty, playing a vital role in making progress towards the United Nations Global Goals for Sustainable Development and ending extreme poverty by 2030.
Oloruntimehin, stated that “Cisco is extremely happy to partner with an organization like Global Citizen who shares an affinity for driving global change, especially with the use of technology and innovation. Through this multi-year partnership with Global Citizen, Cisco will equip advocates and activists around the world with the 21st century skills and tools they will need to make a meaningful difference in the lives of the world’s most marginalized people.”