US Embassy supports Zim technoprenuers
Tonderai Rutsito Tech Spot
The United States embassy in Harare recently spoke on how its government is helping young and upcoming technology entrepreneurs, also known as technoprenuers in Zimbabwe, during a one-day career guidance and exhibition event held at Harare Institute of Technology.
Speaking to thousands of students who gathered for the official launch of tech@school event, Nicole Finnemann, the US embassy public affairs officer, spoke on many programmes being channelled to Zimbabwe to uplift young entrepreneurs.
Finnemann spoke on her previous experience on various five continents and Zimbabwe being her eighth country; she commended and singled it out for its outstanding commitment and response to various programmes they are running.
Through its International programme, Young African Leaders Initiative Network, established by President Barack Obama in April 2014, YALI Network provides virtual resources and vibrant platforms to equip young African leaders with the skills and connections they need to foster change in their communities and their countries.
Nicole said 60 Zimbabweans will be selected for the United States tour and educational programme and will also have 60 fellows joining as well from Kenya and South Africa.
The Network already includes almost 150 000 members. Using yali.state.gov <https://youngafricanleaders.state.gov/> and social media, the United States provides online courses and materials, and connects members with global leaders in their fields to help members develop leadership skills.
“Because this is president Obama’s true belief that Africans need to come together and talk to each other well over 130 000 Africans at the time and 1 000 participated in the same programme but the white house wanted to expand the hall since it was going to be small, white house wanted 1 000 entrepreneurs and investors from 159 countries.
The US Embassy also drives the Global Innovation through Science and Technology (GIST) network which has helped more than 5 000 start-ups around the world and provided more than $8 million in capital to start-ups.
In Harare, the US has also helped in funding the first technology Hub in Zimbabwe, called Hypercube Hub, a core working space for young entrepreneurs to share and develop various technological solutions.
The public affairs officer also spoke on the recently held innovation Baraza, a challenge that identified young and upcoming techies in Zimbabwe to come and pitch up their ideas and project prototypes to receive support and connections to funders or partners.
Finnemann also said they are offering free study centres and internet access at their city location, Eastgate, to provide students with resources to enhance their studies and research daily, free of charge.
She explained how the US is committed to the development of technoprenuers worldwide and particularly how Zimbabwe was encouraging due to its commitment and enthusiasm to join various developmental programmes.
She praised Zimbabweans for being keen to learn and having entrepreneurial spirit after seeing the nation submitting the highest number of candidates in the past year.
“Zimbabwe is consistently a cut above the rest, they consistently turn heads – recently had the most entrepreneurs invited to the summit, they were doing amazing things in those three days in Nairobi and were more organised than any other group at the summit.”
The US Embassy has been hosting many events, both regionally and internationally which are seeing thousands of Zimbabweans getting world class exposure to trending technologies and closer opportunities to engage our young and upcoming entrepreneurs to renowned industry players.
The writer is the editor of TechnoMag, Zimbabwe`s Premiere Technology Magazine, More In depth and Videos from www.technomag.co.zw, follow us on our social platforms Twitter: @TechnoMagZw, Facebook: www.facebook.com/technomagzw