The first robotics boot camp kicked off in Kigali yesterday, bringing together at least 40 outstanding students (20 boys and 20 girls) from 20 schools across the country.
The three-weeks ‘Robotics Camp Rwanda 2018’, organised by Bank of Kigali TecHouse, will be facilitated by senior students from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, at Lycée de Kigali in Kiyovu.
Regis Rugemanshuro, the CEO of BK TecHouse, said the main goal is to promote Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) education among young students and inspire the youth to think of creating solutions that can solve current problems.
“We understand that education is critical in preparing the next generation of problem solvers. We want the students to be equipped with the right skills in a sense that they will leave when they are prepared enough to solve the problems in this digital world,” he said.
Rugemanshuro also highlighted that the boot camp is in line with the company’s goals of promoting innovations.
The boot camp is running under the theme; Shaping the workforce of the future to strive in the digital world and Expectations are high from the organisers and the students alike.
Claudette Irere, the director general ifor ICT at the ministry of Information Technology and Communication, said that there is no better way to realise the country’s vision of becoming a knowledge based economy than investing in young students.
“In fact, the restructuring and splitting of the Ministry of ICT and Youth meant that the government wanted to raise its commitment towards promoting technology. Supporting such a programme is one of our priorities, and we believe that students should be taught these skills at a young age,” she said, adding that the ministry is looking into a framework of integrating new technologies into education systems.
Irere said the ministry has already created a directorate in charge of innovation and business development, which she said will be facilitating local innovators.
Throughout the week, students will learn how to make basic robots and their basic applications in daily life.
The boot camp will end with a televised grand finale with participants showcasing their newly built robotics.
Régis Aimé Rugerinyange, one of the participants, told The New Times that they are so excited for the new experience they will get, and that they hope to finish the camp with ideas that can solve many social problems.