Collaborative partnerships remain key to addressing the increasing need for quality software development skills in the country. Fortunately, Samsung South Africa, through its partnership with Wits University’s Tshimologong Digital Innovation Precinct has announced the launch of the second group of youths entering the App Factory Internship Programme. Following Samsung’s R280-million Equity Equivalent Investment Programme (EEIP) investment last year, Samsung and Tshimologong continue on the journey of building software development skills for unemployed youth. The App Factory is an essential learning ground for teaching the language of technology, which is coding. Interns get to work with experienced senior developers over nine months to grow their competence and hone their skills – an education that can translate into a successful career in a rapidly expanding industry.
“This is an immense platform for empowering deserving, previously disadvantaged youth. Aligned with our global mission of ‘Enabling People’, from here they can launch careers that place them at the forefront of the 4th Industrial Revolution, says Hlubi Shivanda, Director for Business Operations, Innovation and Corporate Affairs.” Since embarking on the programme in February this year the current, outgoing cohort of interns say they have gained essential hands-on experience and unique insight into software development as a career as well as an understanding of the demands of the wider industry. The programme has had an impact on the lives of many according to Thendo Mudau from North-West University, “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity. There is so much to learn so that you can grow on a personal and professional level.”
Chief Executive of the Tshimologong Precinct, Lesley Donna Williams, says, “The programme offers invaluable experience for graduates at a crucial point in the very beginning of their careers. Many graduates do not have the necessary experience to land their first job as a software developer. Through the Samsung collaboration, Tshimologong aims to develop and grow seven more, talented graduates by bridging the knowledge and experience gap under the mentorship of a senior developer to ultimately make them more employable at the end of the 9 months.”