Aptech hinges national development on ICT stability, expansion
Stability of Nigeria’s Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector would be critical to the country’s development.
This, according to the Director, Aptech Computer Education, Lekki, Lagos, Joseph Ebinum, has become necessary if the country must play big in the comity of nations.
Ebinum warned that Nigeria is being left behind by other countries of the world, including Africans, which have adopted favourable policies and created enabling environment for business growth.
He said this at the 2018 Aptech Career Quest in partnership with Middlesex University, held in Lagos, where students were given 50 per cent scholarship on the course fee for Advanced Diploma in Software Engineering (ADSE) program.
Speaking on the importance of ICT to national development, he said: “Today national development is hinged on political stability and ICT.
In Nigeria, while in spite of our wealth, we are way behind in all indices of development in the whole world and it is so because we pay lip service to education, we don’t think about ICT.
“Small countries like Kenya, Uganda, Botswana, even Ghana are thinking futuristically; all we are thinking of in Nigeria is how to cut corners.
National development without education, without ICT which is the future of education is a joke so; we have a long way to go.
“The government should create more ICT parks, that is, more computer education zone.
They should fund education because education is our future.
It is not the billions or the trillions that they call in every year’s budget that will develop the country, it’s the knowledge that people apply to using those resources, if you give money to a fool, the money is lost but if you give that same money to a wise man, the money will be reinvested and yield more money.
“What development has our budget brought us since the last ten years?, .. We are not serious as a country so, my message to the government is, get serious with education, ICT, encourage those of us who are bringing out our resources.
Education is not a very profitable sector of the economy.
Government in most developed nations assists people like us to bring up people who will run the economy in very different section,” he stated.
I wept recently when I heard that Google had opened a centre in Ghana, it’s because the government of Ghana knows the value and made the environment easy for them to come in. So, my message to the government is, get serious about education
On the programme, he said “this is an annual programme to sensitise the public on what we do, which is training in Information Communication Technology(ICT) so, the programme is about showcasing what our students do and what they are capable of doing, it’s also to let parents and students who are still in secondary school know about the exciting prospects they can have in information technology.
On why Aptech lay emphasis on secondary school students, he said, “that is really our catchment area; we are open, we are flexible but they are the ones that are really trainable, must people who don’t have ICT experience that are working, do not have the kind of time that they need to expand their knowledge, but that doesn’t mean that we talk only to students, our doors are open to professionals who know a bit of it and want to become expert so, we train them up to a level of competence.
On the scholarship, he said, “the scholarship are for those who intend studying the ADSE Program for the duration of 2-year or existing students who wants to get their B.sc at Middlesex University. “”we like to reward excellence, we like to encourage people to be the best they could be and these awards and scholarship are geared towards doing that, it’s an incentives; it’s not necessarily monetary but it’s to show them that we appreciate the extra passion they have in whatever they are doing and to encourage others to be like them. We are in collaboration with Middlesex University in the UK for the scholarship, we also have branches in Malta and Cyprus so, the Aptech franchise is a worldwide franchise that has brought this synergy between a computer training and the university system in the United Kingdom, so, it’s our way of encouraging the students as well to further their education, and the scholarship is a way of making it easier to do that.
It would be untrue to say the program has been widely successful because it’s not a very cheap programme but the few who have come in have very positive tales to tell and I can say that is the only one my joy of seeing the transformation of students when they come in and when they are about to go out so, psychologically, it’s been successful in term of number but in term of revenue, it has not been widely successful but we are getting there gradually.
Also speaking on the Career Quest scholarship scheme, the Regional Manager-Africa, Middlesex University, Graeme Tong explained that is designed to encourage students who enrolled for the Advanced Diploma in Software Engineering (ADSE) programme at the Middlesex University got 50% scholarship. One of the students, Lisa Ulu was granted 50 per cent scholarship to study in Mauritius. She said the opportunity, was a dream come true, as it would assist her to fulfil her dream of becoming a technology guru in her field as a .Net Programmer.
First year student in Advanced Diploma in Software Engineering(ADSE) Nneli Vincent Chuks, who has been in the school for three months said, “this course expand my knowledge in computer and software engineering. studied Botany at the University of Lagos before I found out that I have a passion in software engineering and computer after I graduated.
I am thinking about incorporating what I studied into IT; there are things in herbal that IT can extract, give you more knowledge about, like plants that are effective for malaria treatment.