Season 2 of Microsoft’s Game Of Learners Competition Kicks Off in Kenya and Nigeria

Microsoft today launched the second season of the Game Of Learners competition for University students in Kenya and Nigeria. The programme was launched last year with the main objective of empowering university students to develop solutions that can address some of the continent’s pressing issues. Last season’s innovations were for the healthcare sector, while for this year, the task is to come up with possible digital solutions that can aid the continent to overcome pressing bottlenecks facing education in the region.

Very notable innovations have come out of the Game Of Learners challenge. Last season’s challenge of demonstrating the application of technology in developing e-health systems to enable patients access normal medical services remotely saw RemD, a mobile-based medical application emerge the winners, among other notable projects.

The programme

Game Of Learners is an initiative by Microsoft’s Africa Development Center (ADC). The programme is run in the form of a virtual hackathon that runs for 5 weeks and engages directly with students at the grassroots level regardless of what school they come from.

Speaking at the launch, Mr. Jack Ngare, the ADC Managing Director reiterated that Game Of Learners is a program without borders as it provides a virtual environment where students learn computer science technologies and practices hands-on while they build impactful solutions for their community. He also mentioned that the Microsoft Engineering team is accepting self-taught students. So, yes, continue with those tutorials and don’t shy away from pursuing your passion.

The programme comes at a time when the continent faces a lot of challenges that have delayed the critical development journey that accelerates economic growth. Some of these challenges include:

  • Poor quality environment such as overcrowding.
  • Lack of proper facilities like textbooks and learning resources.
  • Poverty in most of the countries making it hard to employ qualified teachers.
  • Cultural practices that dictate early marriages.
  • Lack of resources such as power, internet and devices.

Game Of Learners Season 2

The second season will see a total of 60 students from Kenya and Nigeria take part in the competition. The 60 students will comprise of 12 team leads and 48 learners (24 women and 24 men) who are undergraduate students. Gender balance has also been factored in with a 50/50 percent distribution between males and females. The students will be coached and mentored by a team of 40 volunteers from Microsoft who will take them throughout the five-week engagement and judge each team’s final project submission. In total, 496 students from the two countries had expressed their interest to join in the competition.

The judging for the competition will go through three phases where winners from the final three projects will be announced on 23rd April at the ADC Open Day.

Apart from the resources from Microsoft and the mentors, the learners are also in a better position to be considered for opportunities available from the Africa Development Center partners to ensure that there is continuity in the learners’ development.

Follow the conversation on #ADCGameOfLearners to find out more about the competition and cheer for your favorite project.



About the Author

Sharon Adisa
Sharon is a writer and editor who strives to continually further both the depth and breadth of her skills as a writer so as to contribute superior work and deliver client and customer satisfaction.

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