“It was life changing” – Impacts of the CodeTribe Academy

Former CodeTriber, Sinoxolo Malisa.
Sinoxolo Malisa, a former CodeTriber who is now a Jr. Cyber Security Analyst.

What is CodeTribe?

The CodeTribe Academy is one of mLab Southern Africa’s programmes, it is a Coding initiative that gives young and talented youth an opportunity to earn training and work experience in Coding. We see intelligence and potential in young people from townships, so we prioritise grooming these young talents. From the CodeTribe Academy, our graduates also get up-skilled in cloud technologies, scrum agile project management along with other soft skills. The intention is to prepare them for employment and encourage entrepreneurship. 

The programme has trained more than 500 developers and continues to succeed in empowering youth who are passionate about ICT. Having produced employment ready and business driven graduates over the years since its existence, it would be unjust to not share some of CodeTribe’s remarkable achievements.

Former CodeTribers say this about the programme:

Two former ‘CodeTribers’ and one of the academy’s Skills Accelerator and Facilitator had a chat with us about their experiences at CodeTribe. 

Moshabane Tshepo (24), a former CodeTriber from Limpopo joined the CodeTribe programme in 2020. This was Tshepo’s first internship and work experience. Describing his early days in the programme, “It was a bit challenging at first but I quickly adjusted and it was quite nice even though it was virtual”. 

According to Tshepo, the experience he got at CodeTribe has put him in a position where he is confident to start his own business. mLab strives to empower young people through entrepreneurship, education and employment. Tshepo’s confidence in his skills and achievements are a milestone for the mLab organisation. 

“It was life-changing”

Tshepo is currently a Junior Software Developer at Ambee, he secured this job after completing the 12-month coding programme at mLab. Talking about his time at CodeTribe, he said it was life changing. “After the experience I got from CodeTribe I don’t even have to be looking for work, I get people who contact me to work on projects with me”. He added that the skills and experience he obtained from the CodeTribe Academy have improved his entrepreneurial edge and would encourage young people from townships to join the programme. “They must join, but for the programme to work for them they would have to be dedicated, put effort and time”, he said. 

Former CodeTriber, Tshepo Moshabane.
Tshepo Moshabane, a former CodeTriber who is now a Jr. Software Developer.

 

One of the things that are of high importance to Tshepo is imparting the knowledge and skills in young people. “I have started giving out textbooks to a couple of young people in my area, so they could learn about coding”, said Tshepo. He added that the rate of youth unemployment is high and believes that coding skills and programming could help reduce unemployment.

The importance of practical skills

Skills Accelerator and Facilitator of CodeTribe, Nathanael Zondo also highlighted that youth who come from university with the hopes of entering the job market, find it hard to do so. “There are graduates who spend more than 2 years looking for jobs but end up not getting them because they do not have training”, said Nathanael. He added that CodeTribe also opened his eyes to the necessity of practical training.

A young woman in Tech, Sinoxolo Malisa:

About 48% of the developers trained by the CodeTribe Academy are females, Noxolo Malisa (24) is part of that. Malisa joined CodeTribe in 2020 and is currently working as a Junior Cyber Security Analyst. She joined the programme in July 2020, “At first I was scared because I have never developed an application before, the only thing I knew was theory from university”, she described her initial days in the programme. 

Surprisingly, after a couple of months of training she worked on an amazing application. She developed an E-learning application whereby users registered for courses, took tests or quizzes and received their results after completing the tasks. This is a brilliant example of the positive impacts of ICT in the education system. 

As someone who comes from rural areas, Noxolo says she knows how it is like to be a learner and to not have access to essential resources like the internet. She would like to use the skills she has to help in the improvement of rural education, “Most children from rural areas come from impoverished homes and have no money to buy data, I would like to use my skills to develop an E-learning application that will not require data to access learning material”. 

Noxolo and Tshepo are great examples of the youth that mLab and CodeTribe want to produce every year. The CodeTribe programme runs for 12 months, applications for the 2022 intake are currently open. Interested candidates must apply on the mLab website under ‘Programmes’. 

 

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