Huawei Technologies has not relented on its efforts to ensure Nigerian students registered under its authorized information and network academy are trained in core ICT skills in the face of the Covid19 pandemic.
The company moved its classes online, engaging hundreds of students across the country on their computer screens from the comfort of their homes.
The Huawei Authorized Information and Network Academy (HAINA) in collaboration with more than 70 universities in Nigeria was established to train students for free in the latest internationally relevant ICT skills in subjects such as Networks, Cloud Computing and Big Data. As at today, over 10,000 Nigerian students have benefitted.
In an exclusive interview with some of the teachers and students, we got insights into the structure of the Huawei ICT Academy online training program and its impact.
The Head of IT Technical Support Unit, Kastina State Institute of Technology and Management, Mr. Lawal Ahmad Alassan, who is also a Huawei Academy Instructor in Routing, Switching, Storage and Security said his first batch of online classes held from the 10th till the 15th of May 2020 and he had between 75 to 50 students from different educational institutions from all over Nigeria.
He said classes were split into 2 classes of 40 each. The training was structured for 3 hours daily with breaks in between. The entire course was broken down into 4-5 topics daily.
Speaking about his experience teaching the students online, he said “It was a wonderful experience coming from a virtual classroom organised by Huawei. The students were so overwhelmed and as we speak now we have over 250 students waiting to be trained and still making enquiries and application for training. To some of the students it was a new experience and they never thought they could achieve such training process while staying at home.”
Excited about the regular participation of the students, he said “the online training has made instructors and the students bother less about the lockdown because we have been made to acquire knowledge through Huawei’s training platform in the most incredible manner. With these trainings, the ICT industry in Nigeria would grow faster.”
“If our education sector could include virtual classes in our educational platform, it will go a long way in solving most of our educational challenges in Nigeria. On behalf of the students and myself and co-instructors, Huawei has made the stay at home caused by the covid-19 a blessing in disguise.” Mr. Lawal recommended.
Augustine, another Huawei Academy Instructor from the University of Port Harcourt, who teaches on Programming, Algorithms, Data Structures and Artificial Intelligence said he also held his classes from the 10th till the 15th of May 2020 with over 100 students from various location in Nigeria (Port Harcourt, Abuja, Lagos, Enugu, Niger, Anambra, Delta, etc.) According to him, “the experience was very refreshing and the students were very eager to learn.”
“The student’s participation was encouraging as most of them were always early to join the meeting. They also participated during the practical sessions. The contents of the entire content of the Routing and Switching curriculum were cover with focus on key topics,” he added.
Speaking on the impact of the training on the students, Augustine said “the training would be very beneficial to the students and the society at large as it not only provides them with the needed experience to boost their career but also a source of inspiration to spawn new ideas in network development on creativity.”
A student participant, Ngei Mkpuru-mpio, said “The HCIA training was insightful and detailed though in a short time. It forms a foundation for my Huawei 5G career pursuit.”
Another student participant, Akpunonu Chidozie Joseph, said “Networking is one of my favourite courses and HCIA R&S has enlighten me more about IT and E-LEARNING, showing that everything is still possible without classroom despite the challenges of network and other things. It has added to my skill base and also enriched my CV.”
Let’s hear from this student participants too, Erewari Eke: “my learning experience in the HCIA Routing and switching class was educative and I was able to understand what the lecturer explained better than the actual written explanation in the pdf. I learnt how to navigate and manage Huawei products through the virtual routing platform, built efficient data switching environments through the management of switching products and manipulation of link layer protocols, I understood the principles of routing and configure RIP/OSPF routing protocols and many more. As a Computer Scientist, It will help me a lot as I progress in real life networking. Thanks a lot.”
Elele Gideon, a student participant said “I am so happy to have benefitted from these Huawei virtual classroom happening across the country. I learnt a lot on subjects such as IP Address, subnetting, Enterprise Network Design and Implementation. The program was resourceful and helped my understanding of technology irrespective of the duration. I look forward to more trainings like this. So grateful to Huawei for organizing this”
According to Kenneth Igwe, Huawei Channel Training Manager (ICT Talent Ecosystem Development) in Nigeria, “although we live in difficult time with the Covid19, Huawei will not relent in making knowledge available to students across the nation. Huawei plans to get 2000 Nigerian students certified in core technology courses during this pandemic period, through the online training and certification.”
“Through the online home training, our partners in the Academia are staying safe, and also improving students’ knowledge capacity.”