WeThinkCode_ seeks partners to place interns through its SME Placement Programme

November 23, 2020 in Developer, Opportunity, Technical, Training and development
A WeThinkCode_ class in action

WeThinkCode_ courses are free to students, no prior coding experience is required and a Matric is optional.

WeThinkCode_ is seeking small and medium company partners to join its SME Placement Programme, which places its students as interns in partner companies during their work placement period.  

 
The programme is aimed specifically at SMEs that need skilled junior software developers who can assist in-house technical staff during two work placements. An added advantage is that partner companies have first option to hire graduates on completion of their studies.
 
Students enter the SME Placement Programme with their tuition fees, valued at R100 000 per learner, already sponsored.  All the SME partner companies have to pay is the internship stipend. 
 
The programme is a win-win for both the SME, which needs additional resources for its digital projects and the students, who need vital on the job experience,” says Nyari Samushonga, CEO of WeThinkCode_.
 
Certain conditions apply: partners need to be registered companies with 250 or fewer employees and turnover of under R85-million a year. Partner companies must also have a senior technical resource to support the students. There are two internship periods during the course – three months from March to May of 2021 and four months from February to May, 2022. The stipulated internship stipend is R7 000 per month.  
 
The skill sets that a WeThinkCode_ intern brings to the business will enable them to add value, for example, in the following areas:
• Working with the existing software development teams to enhance and extend existing custom software, particularly if you have Python or Java codebases;
• Extend or write tests for your codebase;
• Write documentation;
• Investigate and experiment with new tools and technologies that the existing team may not have the capacity to do.
 
The students should be matched with a senior tech person in the company. Continuous learning is encouraged, with the peer-to-peer, practical, pedagogy ensuring that students are primed to pick up new programming languages quickly.
 
Full time employment for the current group of students begins on 1 June, 2022 and hosting SME partners have first right to hire on a minimum one year commitment after the student’s graduation at the end of the programme.
 
Each year, WeThinkCode_ trains 300 talented young South Africans to become highly skilled software developers in a two-year programme and the internship phases are an essential part of the course.  
 
“We are all about finding top talent, no matter where they are from or what they have done before. Our course is completely cost-free to students, no prior coding experience is required and a Matric is optional,” Samushonga says.
 
“We work closely with big players in the tech industry, many of whom are corporate sponsors and fund the programmes. In this way, WeThinkCode_ ensures that the training offered is up-to-the-minute by using cutting-edge technologies that solve today’s problems. The approach to facilitating the learning experience is dynamic and future-forward,” she adds.
 
WeThinkCode_ has an enviable record of success in training software programmers. “Our junior software developers have a 98% graduate employment rate, with our alumni working in more than 55 leading South African businesses at present,” Samushonga concludes.
 
Applications for interns close on 30 November 2020 on a first-come-first-serve basis. The matching process will kick off in December 2020 with interviews held in January, 2021. The first work placement will be from 1 March, 2021 to 31 May, 2021, and the second from 1 February, 2022 to 31 May, 2022.  Full-time employment begins on 1 June, 2022. 
 
For more information and to apply to join the SME Placement Programme, go to https://www.wethinkcode.co.za/sme-form

Bureau Veritas partners with TWAA in support of women in business in Africa

November 16, 2020 in Mentoring, News
Irene Kiwia, TWAA founder

TWAA founder Irene Kiwia

Bureau Veritas, a global testing, inspection, and certification company, has announced the launch of its “BV Women in Africa Mentorship Program” a strategic collaborative partnership with TWAA, a global and professional networking, knowledge sharing and mentorship platform for women and girls.

The platform provides women with digital tools to connect and find suitable mentors and mentees, share and access opportunities bolstering continuous progress and development. 

Speaking at the launch of the program in Nairobi on 4 November, Marc Roussel, President of Government Services & International Trade & Senior Vice President for Africa commented: “The Bureau Veritas Group operates in several countries across Africa. The organisation has a very strong ethos on gender balance and women empowerment. The TWAA initiative enables us to engage women in supporting each other through a BV dedicated mentorship program. This platform creates a unique opportunity to invite many of the great women of BV to support other women within Africa. The digital tool is an incredible means to reach out to many women even if they are located remotely. 

“This initiative will contribute positively to the social compact and development within the African continent and it is my fervent hope that other companies will come on board and support this program,” he added.

Said Irene Kiwia, Founder of TWAA: “We are thrilled to partner with Bureau Veritas to promote TWAA across Africa and globally. This platform was built to help organisations with a strong women empowerment agenda such as Bureau Veritas accomplish their goals  by providing a platform to engage, connect, mobilise and impact their women communities through mentorship, knowledge sharing and access to opportunities. TWAA provides a safe and private space with relevant digital tools for women to thrive and aims to bridge the gender digital divide which can be ramped up if organisations globally become the drivers of the platform.”

The program is available in English, French and Swahili and in the future will be available in even more languages like Yoruba, isiZulu, Portuguese and Arabic. 

Bureau Veritas enjoys a strong gender social awareness ethos, with the company launching the Ithemba Trust in South Africa in 2019, a women’s empowerment body involved in projects benefiting girls and young women in South Africa. 

TWAA is available as a web portal via https://www.twaa.io with soon to be launched mobile apps. 

 

Declaring war on fraud and deep fakes

November 13, 2020 in News, tech
Jon Foster-Pedley, dean and director, Henley Africa

Jon Foster-Pedley, dean and director, Henley Africa.

Henley Business School Africa has become the first business school in Africa to offer digital certification for graduates of its programmes – guaranteeing the security of its qualifications and brand.

In a world where ‘deep fakes’ are becoming an on-demand service and documents, videos and even likenesses can be easily forged, there is an ever-growing need for individuals and organisations to be able to prove their identity and the authenticity of their qualifications quickly and unequivocally.

“Strong digital credentials enable graduate professionals to protect and display the value of their qualifications anywhere in the world,” says Jon Foster-Pedley, dean and director of Henley Africa, “They give prospective employers and clients the confidence that someone has the experience and knowledge that they claim. Henley’s triple-accredited international qualifications are in high demand worldwide and we are making sure that nobody can claim to have them unless they have earned them.”

Henley Africa’s new digital certificates are created by PrivySeal, a technology company founded by South African attorney Stephen Logan. The certificates and linked seals can be embedded in emails, websites, documents or social media, and are checked against Henley’s graduate database. All a user has to do is follow a unique link via a click or QR code to prove the document’s authenticity.

“The ability to quickly confirm a certificate as genuine is important to building trust,” says Logan. “It enables third parties to have faith that they are dealing with a recognised, responsible person with a proven top-class qualification.”

Because the check is made in real-time against an active database, if a qualification has to be corrected or withdrawn by the awarding institution, this is immediately reflected.

PrivySeal’s technology is already in use by professional bodies and statutory regulators in the architecture; quantity surveying; accountancy; governance; IT; engineering; health & safety; education; and, construction sectors in South Africa. It is also used by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) and qualification authorities within the Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) to produce secure and dynamic e-Certificates verifying qualifications in real-time.

“We encourage all of our students to be pioneers in grasping the opportunities and challenges around digital identity. The value of the genuine, the original, the untarnishable is becoming greater every day,” says Foster-Pedley.

“Trust is a critical currency in the digital world and this digital certification will build trust between service partners in the evolving fourth industrial revolution. Backing up their professional qualifications with this technology will let them build their businesses and reputations with confidence.”

Finalists announced for 2020 Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum (AWIEF) Awards

November 6, 2020 in Awards, Entrepreneur, News

AWIEF logo
JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, November 4, 2020/APO Group/ — The Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum (AWIEF) (www.AWIEForum.org), a leading pan-African entrepreneurship and innovation non-profit, has announced the top finalists for the 2020 edition of its AWIEF Awards.

The annual AWIEF Awards, through a nomination process, identifies and celebrates the best female entrepreneurs across multiple industries in Africa.

Promoting and supporting excellence in entrepreneurship and innovation amongst women-owned businesses in all sectors and across all 54 African countries, is the aim of AWIEF which hosts the sixth edition of its prestigious and benchmarking annual Africa Women Innovation and Entrepreneurship Forum Conference, this year as a virtual event, on 2nd and 3rd December 2020.

Twenty-four women founders and entrepreneurs, driving economic growth and development for Africa, have been selected as finalists for 2020 AWIEF Awards, from different African countries, across 8 different categories.

According to Irene Ochem, AWIEF founder and chief executive officer, “This year more than ever, it is vital to acknowledge and celebrate women entrepreneurs in Africa for their leadership and innovation. The impact of the global pandemic has been disproportionate and devastating, and women are showing exceptional resilience.”

The 2020 AWIEF Awards winners will be announced on 3 December at the awards ceremony following on from the two-day AWIEF2020 Virtual Conference. The theme this year is: ‘Reimagining business and rebuilding better’.

The finalists for the 2020 AWIEF Awards are:

Young Entrepreneur Award
Sazia Souza, Managing Partner, Technoplus (Mozambique)
Hannah Lavery, Founder, Hannah Lavery (South Africa)
Olajumoke Odumola, Founder and CEO, KJK Online Communications (Nigeria)
Asomaniwaa Owusu-Ansah, Founder and Chief Pharmacist, Erith Health Services (Ghana)

Tech Entrepreneur Award
Claudette Akinpaye, Founder and Managing Director, Agrizilla (Rwanda)
Marlize Holtzhausen, Founder and CEO, Response24 (South Africa)
Abimbola Adebakin, CEO, Advantage Health (Nigeria)

Social Entrepreneur Award
Rita Stryker, CEO, Willette Safehouse (Liberia)
Adenike Akinsemola, Founder and Director, The Green Institute (Nigeria)
Doris Mollel, Founder and Executive Director, Doris Mollel Foundation (Tanzania)
Mariam Mell & Osiime Mpaata, Founder and CEO, Junior Stars Youth Development Programme (Kenya)

Agri Entrepreneur Award
Victoria Mwafulirwa, Managing Director, Homes Industries (Malawi)
Jacqueline Mukashyaka, Chief Executive Officer, Champion Grocers (Rwanda)
Armelle Sidje Tamo, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, PRA (Product Related to Agricultural Sector (Cameroun)

Creative Industry Award
Hannellie Coetzee, Visual Artist, Wild Wall Tiles/Hannelie Coetzee (South Africa)
Ayanfe Olarinde, Lulu Arts and UnEarthical (Nigeria)
Alice Muyambo, Visual Artist, Fortitude Arts Gallery (Zambia)

Energy Entrepreneur Award
Enoyonam Mosia, Co-founder, Easy Solar (Sierra Leone)
Amma Serwah Boateng, Co-founder, Destra Energy Group (Ghana)

Empowerment Award
Porcho Marguerite Sogoba, CEO, MUSODEV (Mali)
Nasreen Aleey, Founder and CEO, Afrikapu (Kenya)
Qabale Duba, Founder and CEO, Qabale Duba Foundation (Kenya)

Lifetime Achievement Award
Robyn de Villiers, Chairman and CEO, BCW Africa (South Africa)
Daisy Molefhi, Founder and Executive Director, ABM University College (Botswana)

To register for AWIEF2020 Virtual Conference and AWIEF Awards, click: bit.ly/370MV3F

AWIEF2020 is supported by Nedbank, AGRA, APO Group and WESGRO.

Sasol is offering young women bursaries to pursue STEM careers

March 6, 2020 in News, Training and development
Sasol Bursary recipients

Applications close 30 April

 Johannesburg, South Africa – According to UNESCO, less than 30 percent of the world’s scientific researchers and only 35 percent of students studying science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in higher education are women.

“This is a startling statistic, but it also means there are incredible opportunities for women to enter the STEM fields at this exciting time, where technology continues to transform the way we live,” says Monica Luwes, Manager of Graduate Centre at Sasol Corporate Bursary Services, adding that career fields in STEM are regarded as the driving force behind technological transformation and innovation and will be among the highest-paying in the future.

Ahead of International Women’s Day 2020 on March 8, Sasol is encouraging young women to harness their potential by entering STEM fields thereby contributing to the development of much-needed critical skills in the country and to help grow the economy.

To support this next generation of female leaders and innovators in STEM, Sasol is offering and encouraging female learners to apply for its all-inclusive bursary programme that focuses on STEM-related courses at a tertiary level.

“Women are valuable to the world of STEM, and at Sasol we are proud to encourage and enable them to harness this potential giving them the opportunity to kick off and succeed in careers in these fields,” says Luwes. “There is no limit to what they can achieve and if we ignite the STEM spark in our young women, we help generations of women to come.”

Lehlogonolo Letshela, who is studying for a BSc in Chemical Engineering at the University of Cape Town through the Sasol bursary, was attracted to a career in STEM for the value it would bring to her life long-term, and her community. “I have always loved maths and science, and fortunately throughout my school life I’ve had teachers encouraging me to pursue these subjects,” says Letshela. “Young women need great mentors, and I’m hoping I can bring value to them and the community around me.”

Another bursary recipient, Zaina Abrahams, who is studying for a BEng in Mechanical at the University of Cape Town says that she’s always dreamed big of one day working in the science field, and thanks to Sasol, whose enabled her to pursue her dream. “Aside from offering just financial support, Sasol really offers a hand-in-hand ‘partnership’ through their bursar support programme,” said Abrahams. “From offering tutors, to making psychologists and specialists available when we need help, this bursary goes way beyond just the numbers, and enables us to harness our full potential.”

The Sasol bursary is open to learners who are planning to study towards a B Eng or BSc Eng in various engineering disciplines or for a BSc in Chemistry, Geology or Metallurgy. The bursary covers tuition fees, accommodation, meals, textbooks and pocket money. Bursars also receive allowances for study tools such as laptops and calculators, and financial and career assistance as part of the Graduate Development Programme.

To apply:

Applications close 30 April 2020.

Press release: SA SME Fund invests R150 million to commercialise university tech innovation

February 26, 2020 in News

Cape Town, 25 February 2020 — Corporate South Africa, through its investment in the SA SME Fund, is enabling the commercialisation of technology innovations developed by SA universities through its R150 million investment into the University Technology Fund (UTF).

This is the first university technology fund in Africa.

R25 million will be allocated to pre-commercialisation funding, which includes proof of concept and technology development support and R125 million for commercialisation.

Says Ketso Gordhan, CEO of the SA SME Fund: “This investment is intended to unlock the vast potential located inside our world-class universities by commercialising South African technology. This will not only create viable businesses and jobs, but will also encourage a culture of innovation throughout universities in South Africa.  We are exceptionally excited about the potential that this creates.”

South Africa punches above its weight in research capability, having doubled its output since 2000.  Where the country lags is in the commercialisation of the research and patents, which is the gap that the SA SME Fund’s investment is aiming to address.

While the UTF’s initial university partners are University of Cape Town and Stellenbosch University, who provide pipeline for the Fund and each contributed R20 million to co-invest with the UTF, the SA SME Fund’s next step is to expand the programme to universities across South Africa. 

The UTF will be managed by Stocks and Strauss, an independent third party Fund Manager. The Founders and Directors of Stocks and Strauss, Wayne Stocks and Daniel Strauss have a deep understanding of technology and the early stage investment space, having been investors, founders and operationally involved in early stage technology businesses.

Wayne Stocks, Partner at Stocks and Strauss, says: “We are excited to work with Universities to commercialise the world-class intellectual property that has, and is being developed. We will work with them to leverage their research to drive sustainable growth, profit and transformation within the University ecosystem and the broader economy.” 

Link to a short UTF introductory video:  https://youtu.be/vZmD0viamkE 

Follow SA SME Fund on:
Twitter:  @SASMEFUND
LinkedIn: SASMEFUND
Website: www.sasmefund.co.za

 

 

Final speaker line-up for Moving to Mastery: Women in Tech and Digital Conference announced

May 31, 2019 in Events

Useful & Beautiful and Women in Tech ZA today announced the final speaker line-up for the inaugural Women in Tech & Digital Conference – to be held on 12 June at the Belmont Square Conference Centre in Rondebosch, Cape Town.

The event, unusually, features an all-female speaker lineup, including:

  • Comedian Mel Jones – MC and hostess
  • Anna Collard – Popcorn Training – a KnowBe4 company, founder and MD – Female entrepreneurship in Cyber Security
  • Aisha Pandor – SweepSouth co-founder and CEO – The journey from student/researcher to employee to entrepreneur and making the purpose-driven decision (as scary as it was!) to quit my job
  • Birgitta Cederstrom – VP Commercial Brand & Demand MEA MD B Incorporate, Frost & Sullivan – Demystifying AI, Machine Learning and other Tech Buzzwords
  • Barbara Mallinson – Obami founder and CEO – Oh, the lessons I’ve learned! My experiences as an entrepreneur in Africa
  • Jacqui Mackway-Wilson – Go Social SA founder – How to get the best out of social media for your business
  • Lorraine Steyn – KRS founder and CEO – Sustaining your leadership as an industry expert over the years – aka leading from the trenches
  • Lynette Hundermark – U&B co-founder and CPO – Integrating the Silos of Tech and Digital to create purposeful solutions

The event also features two panel discussions. The first, to be chaired by Cathryn Reece, product owner at Property24, will cover wellness including sleep (and getting enough of it), stress, health/fitness, parenting and health trends/work wellness with sleep scientist Dr Dale Rae of the Sports Science Institute, LivFit founder Olivia du Plessis, and Business Insider editor Helena Wasserman.

The second will be chaired by Samantha Perry – Women in Tech ZA co-founder – and delve into technology in action, particularly AI, Blockchain and Machine Learning, with Celina Lee (Co-Founder & CEO at Zindi Africa), Debra Roodt (CCO, Xago), Genevieve Mannel (Head of IT at Cipla), and Emma Kaye (Founder and CEO of Bozza).

Event beneficiary Sisters Incorporated, a safe house for abused women and children, will present on its activities after lunch. The day will conclude with drinks and networking.

Tickets for the Cape Town event are on sale now for R2000. Please email monique@usefulandbeautiful.co.za or visit http://usefulandbeautiful.co.za/events/ to purchase. Ticket sales close on 5 June and limited seats are available.

With thanks to our sponsors Popcorn Training – a KnowBe4 company – and the Belmont Square Conference Centre, media partner ITWeb, without whom this event would not be possible, and our prize sponsors Rouge Day Spa, OneDayOnly, Hope Distillery, TRACE, Kaku,  Wellness Warehouse and ELEMIS who will be helping us to treat our delegates to goodies and spot prizes on the day.

Contact: Samantha Perry, Women in Tech ZA, samantha.perry@gmail.com 

Meetup of Meetups: CT 21st of May

May 21, 2019 in Uncategorized

The Cape Town Women in Tech organisers are trying something different for a meetup this time. We’re teaming up with CTPUG and DevOps to join forces make a meetup of meetups. The one meetup to rule them all. 

Date: 21st May 2019

Agenda 🗓
——————-
18:00 – 18:45: Arrive & mingle with people.
18:45 – 20:00: Three short talks.
20:00 – 21:00: Continue chatting & networking.

Talks 📢
——————-
– Zinidi Data Science Platform – Celina Lee

Celina Lee, CEO of Zindi joins us to discuss the platform and how
data scientists can find all the tools they need on Zindi to compete, share ideas, hone their skills, build their professional profiles and find career opportunities. Zindi is also a place to access African datasets and solve African problems. Whether you are a veteran or a newbie this exciting new platform is definitely worth exploring.

– Blameless Culture: Keeping promises even when people F*** up bad – Gareth Dwyer

Blameless culture in technical teams is a growing trend. I’ll talk about taking this to the extreme, focussing on DevOps teams, and ask some questions about how to handle situations where someone has obviously and badly f***ed up (and maybe provide some answers). Even if they don’t get blamed, should they at least receive negative feedback as an incentive to not do stupid sh*t again? Maybe not. If you don’t enjoy this talk, I am obviously not to blame.

– How to power up your Django ORM – Jethro Muller

The Django ORM is a powerful tool. However, it is often misunderstood and confusing to
debug, optimise, and use effectively. Properly using the Django ORM can lead to incredible
speed improvements and allow complicated queries to be expressed simply. In this talk,
I’ll discuss common debugging, optimisation, and querying techniques to improve
productivity and avoid common pitfalls.

Venue 🏢
——————-
Takealot
12th Floor, Takealot Building 18a Rua da Gama Plain, Foreshore · Cape Town

As you arrive on the 12th floor, to the left is the bar. And to the right is the auditorium.
Please visit the bar and have a drink and a light snack (thanks to Takealot’s sponsorship).
Please be in the auditorium at about 18:45 for the talk.

* Street parking on
– Hertzog Blvd on the Auto Atlantic side
– DF Malan on both sides of the street by the Artscape
– Rua Bartholomeu Dias Plain
– Salazar Plain

* Secure parking in
– Auto Atlantic parking ~R10/hour
– Media 24 parking next to Salazar Plain ~R30
– Netcare / Virgin Active parking (access via DF Malan) “Not sure on price”

Please see the map here: https://imgur.com/7bAKHtp

Sponsors 💝
——————-

AWS are gold sponsors of this unique event

Jetbrains for giving away a full license to one of their products
Takealot for the drinks.
Takealot for the venue.
OfferZen for the speaker gift, shirts and stickers

Code of Conduct
——————-
Please refer to the DevOps Code of Conduct here: https://www.meetup.com/Cape-Town-DevOps/pages/21932587/Code_of_Conduct/