Home Tech Safaricom Launches Connect Academy to Train Fiber Optic Technicians

Safaricom Launches Connect Academy to Train Fiber Optic Technicians

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Safaricom in partnership with the Information and Communication Technology Authority (ICTA) have launched the Connect Academy, a program designed to provide industry-leading training for fiber optic technicians.

The launch which happened at the Connected Summit 2024 happening at Uhuru Gardens will see over 10,000 youths, unable to further their education get skills to be expert in the field which is vital in digitization, over a 5 years period.

The initiative aligns with Safaricom’s commitment to bolstering fiber optic networks in Kenya and Ethiopia, as well as the ICT Authority’s plans to expand fiber networks, public Wi-Fi hotspots, and Digital Village Smart Hubs.

Already, 750 youths had undergone the training during the pilot phase which took about 14 weeks and will be getting a professional certificate to culminate their training.

This year, the academy aims to train 1000 technicians.

“Our target is to grow a world-class broadband connectivity talent pool for both public and private sectors in partnership with TVETs,” said Fawzia Ali-Kimanthi, Chief Consumer Business Officer at Safaricom. “This will create employment and a career path for Kenyan youth who lack higher education.”

Speaking after the signing of the cooperative agreement, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of ICT Authority, Stanley Kamanguya, emphasized the significance of public-private partnerships in achieving digital transformation across Africa.

“This academy feeds right into our plan to collaborate with the private sector in our digital transformation agenda,” said Mr Kamanguya. “We’ve been very consistent that as government, we cannot do this alone, and that’s why we’ve been calling upon the private sector to come in and support and collaborate with us.The signing with Safaricom is a testament to the collaboration that we have been talking about, and we thank them for taking the lead,” he added. “Together, we shall empower people and shape a Connected Africa.”

Customer Support Lead, Safaricom-Connect Academy, Paul Mbaka noted that the trainees will get extra courses on customer service, communication skills, health and safety and financial management to ensure they are market ready.

“We want to grow broadband connectivity talent pool in Kenya accelerating internet penetration as the foundation to the robust digital economy,” said Mr Mbaka who noted that the programme will train 1000 this year. “We will partner with the tvets from October to ensure the remaining 250 technicians get the training.”

Mr Mbaka noted that the youth who undergo the trainining will be linked to the market. “We will find them jobs but we are empowering them to be self employed.”

Kenya’s government unveiled a plan to deploy 100,000 kilometers of fiber optic infrastructure across the country, according to the Kenya’s Digital Masterplan 2022-2032 revealed at the Connected Summit 2022.

This significant infrastructure expansion aims to connect 40,000 schools and other learning institutions, 20,000 government institutions, and 13,000 health facilities. The project is expected to boost internet connectivity throughout Kenya, facilitating improved service delivery in education, government services, and healthcare.

Imparting the youths with fibre optic connection skills will enable Kenya advance in this journey.

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