News & Events
#ALUSummerStories: Our Students’ Summer Term Global Achievements
ALU Students don’t take a traditional summer break. Our students work year-round and during the summer term, they participate in summer internships, fellowships, business incubators, and many more dynamic activities around the globe. A few of our students shared their summer term journeys with us, and we’re so incredibly proud of the impact they are having and the leaders they are becoming. A few of their #ALUSummerStories are as follows:
Two of our Mauritius campus Computer Science students, Kevin Apondi and Catherine Njeri spoke at this years EdVentr Entrepreneurship Forum about their e-Commerce fashion accessory venture, Vikuku. EdVentr is an entrepreneurial initiative that aims to empower the youth and make them self aware, as well as gain independence through different workshops. Not only did the forum serve as an avenue for them to share knowledge, but it also provided networking opportunities with other entrepreneurs. We can’t wait to see our far they take Vikuku!
Kellyson Siamunjo, Daniella Uwase, and Peter Ndahiro, three students at our Rwanda campus, completed the Hult Prize Summer Accelerator Program this summer and we are happy to announce that they’ve won a spot to attend the Hult Prize Global Finals at the UN Headquarters in New York this September. Congratulations team, you make us proud! Daniella shared, “we are grateful to have been part of this global accelerator where we got to meet, learn and be mentored by successful people. We believe that this has left a huge mark on our lives and we would like to share it with others too.”
After attending the Entrepreneurship Summer Boot Camp at Michigan State University, Christin Ngabo Murenzi said, “I had an amazing experience. I was impressed by the cultural diversity in the program with people from the six continents, which broadened my perspective on the other parts of the world. I got to realize how ALU is introducing an innovative learning model on our continent while interacting with people from the US, Australia, Asia, etc. I also visited some US cities such as Chicago, Detroit & New York only to find out that technology has been one of the main pillars in developing such places.”
Gitahi Godfrey Kariuki, one of our Social Science students from ALC Mauritius recently attended the Lights Camera Action summer film program at Michigan State University. Gitahi expressed that his “experience working with a group of people from a different context was one of the most humbling things I have taken part in. I was encouraged to write my own script and operate the camera in one of the 7 films the whole group presented. I discovered I still need to learn a lot in professional film-making. I equally made lifelong friends and, together, we are working to improve each other. I thank ALU for making me aware of this opportunity.”
Among the 20 Women Techmakers Scholars from EMEA (Europe, Middle East, and Africa), Google selected ALC Mauritius students, Lum-neh Angela and Olfa Fdhila to participate. Through this program, Google is furthering Dr Anita Borg’s vision of creating gender equality in the field of computer science by encouraging women to excel in computing and technology to become active leaders and role models in the field. Lum-neh Angela and Olfa Fdhila attended the student retreat at Google’s London office to connect with fellow scholars and Google mentors while participating in professional and personal development workshops.
In Ms. Lum-neh Angela’s words, “Among some of the achievements I have received so far, I am most proud of being selected as one of 20 Google-selected Women Techmakers scholars from EMEA and amongst the 4 from Africa. Among the many amazing workshops, panel discussions, fun activities and career information sessions, I was particularly inspired by the keynote speaker, a technical manager and Software Engineer from Google Israel who spoke on Imposter Syndrome experienced by women mostly in the tech industry. She urged us to avoid being the ones holding ourselves back and to seek opportunities outside our comfort zone. In addition, through the #IAmRemarkable workshop, an initiative by Google to empower women and underrepresented groups to celebrate their achievements in the workplace and beyond, we were encouraged to share more about our accomplishments to counter some of the biases and stereotypes experience by women in tech. Being my first time in London, I was super excited to visit some landmarks like the London Eye, Buckingham Palace, etc. To conclude, I am very humbled to be part of the Google Women Techmakers Community, and I am more motivated and inspired to continue advocating for more women in STEM-related disciplines and to be a tech role model for young girls in Africa.
Madani Napaul traveled to Bogota to represent ALU at MIT’s annual Global Startup Workshop (GSW) conference – he and his teammate Alex Kalanda are working to bring the conference to our ALC campus in 2020! From there, Mr. Madani Napaul moved to Hong Kong to represent ALU at the HSBC/HKU Business Competition Finals. He and his team did a remarkable job! You can read about their success in our HSBC/HKU Asia Pacific 2019 Business Case Competition
Admitted to the Stanford Summer session and selected by Stanford University as one of 200 of the most dynamic students in the world, Alex Kalanda was also invited to attend the Silicon Valley Innovation Academy. While he didn’t go to California this summer, he was also invited and attended the MIT Global Startup Workshop 2019 with his teammate Madani Napaul in Bogota and then continued to work on MIT GSW to accelerate the Entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem.
Student Venture team Tutoo+ made it big this last quarter! In June, team representative Amenan Couboura SIDIKI represented the tutoo+ team at the Global Entrepreneurial Bootcamp, an MIT accredited event, in Bangkok, and nailed her presentation, receiving community recognition for Tutoo+ as a sustainable project. The team was then invited to the Young Job Network Forum in Abidjan to present Tutoo+ in line with the forum’s theme of African youth facing technological changes. At that same forum, the Tutoo+ organized workshops to train 50+ entrepreneurs on business related skills. Most recently, Tutoo+ came out among the top 3 social ventures of the Orange Fab Competition in Ivory Coast “Prix Orange de l’Entrepreneur Social Côte d’Ivoire 2019″, giving them their first official round of seed funding.
ALU student Khalid participated in a three week Michigan State University (MSU) exchange program. In his words, “My three-week experience with the MSU exchange program was quite a phenomenal experience right from the first day. The staff were very welcoming and assisted with anything needed. We had several trips and tours around Michigan State. We also had lunch with the African Studies Center Department which was very interesting. I also participated in the Entrepreneurship Bootcamp and learned a lot from my peers as well as from the facilitator, Mr. Ken Szymusiak. He gave us daily challenges and assignments to tackle a new project and at the end of the final week, we had to present our project to the class for evaluation. The last day was quite sad for all of us because we all had to leave for our various countries and we had a graduation ceremony. The best experience I had from this program was establishing good networks with people from Australia, Michigan, and Chicago.”
This is just a small sample of the brilliance of our student body. ALU students are making bold moves around the world. As you come back to campus, whether you were mentioned in this article or you weren’t, we know you are doing bold remarkable things and we’re so proud of who you are and who you’re becoming. Welcome back!