Africa, with 70% of its population being under 30, is one of the youngest continents on the globe. This combined with a rapid economic growth of the past decade, opens certain opportunities for the continent’s development.
Technology is another key factor that will most certainly shape Africa’s future. With the mobile revolution plus quite a high cellphone ownership rate, the continent could skip several stages of technological development and arrive at the digital age.
However, technical and vocational schools are developing with the pace way below the market’s needs. With the enrollment rate lower than 5% and large fragmentation, the system is not enough to provide proper skills to the youth entering the labour market. As a result, 3 out of 5 young people stay unemployed or take up low-paid jobs which means wasting many undiscovered talents and potential.
Meanwhile, quality vocational training enables the acquisition of useful job-related skills. As it was stated before, Africa has a high demand for electronics specialists, it is crucial to provide the youth with practical training and preparation. One of the solutions is a programme proposed by TME Education, a project created by Transfer Multisort Elektronik, a global distributor of electronic components based in Poland. One of the pillars of their activity is to provide knowledge in “hands-on experiments” teaching model. This considerably shortens the process of acquiring theoretical and manual skills needed for taking up an electronics-related job.
Electronics is still quite a rare discipline among most Sub-Saharan vocational schools. Meanwhile, promoting it can contribute to solving many problems Africa is struggling with. For instance, unemployment among the youth could decrease as a practical skill not only make one more competitive on the labour market but also create opportunities for creating their own businesses. This can mean not only improving the economic situation of one person but also of the local community that will be able to benefit from new services in the area.
However, TME Education goes one step further than just simply teaching ready-made solutions. It came up with a set of tool that is to nourish creativity and give space for the youth to work on their own unique ideas. For instance, Arduino-based TME-EDU-ARD-2 is a tool enabling comfortable and effective programming for beginners. The kit has a variety of embedded peripherals that open vast perspectives for experiments, solutions and gives strong fundamentals for more complicated projects. At the same time, it’s compact and easy to use as it doesn’t require additional breadboard or jump wires. Like this, a student can make the first steps in microcontroller programming and get inspirations for solutions, that can be easily applied in healthcare, education or agriculture.
Although electronics might seem to be extremely sophisticated, it is possible to apply some simple mechanism in everyday life without having any university background. Nevertheless, no one can simply learn it from books and apply right away. That’s why the practical approach to electronics is essential in areas of such characteristics as Africa, where the demand for solutions is high and the supply of qualified engineers and workers is still short.