In line with its efforts to support Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) education in Nigeria, Interswitc, has announced plans to donate Information Technology (IT) equipment to students in 10 tertiary institutions across Nigeria.
The initiative, which is being implemented in collaboration with Cisco, will see Interswitch donating routers and switches to the Cisco Networking Academies in these institutions.
The donations are expected to support the students of the Cisco Networking Academies as they explore their passion in the field of STEM and learn to develop solutions to everyday problems faced by Africans.
Beneficiary include Igbinedion University Okada; Lagos State Polytechnic, Ikorodu; Covenant University, Ota; Federal University of Technology Akure; Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife; University of Maiduguri; Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria.
Others are Lagos State University; University of Port Harcourt and University of Nigeria, Nsukka. Each of the institutions run the Cisco Networking Academies, a platform where individuals and communities use tech tools to create impact.
Interswitch’s donation aligns with its long-standing efforts to encourage more African students to take up STEM courses in school.
The company urged the uptake of STEM courses by students through its various initiatives such as the Interswitch SPAK National Science Competition which is held yearly in Nigeria and East Africa.
Group Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, Interswitch Group, Cherry Eromosele, said Interswitch is committed to improving learning, especially in STEM courses.
“We understand that the study of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics courses are not a walk in the park. However, going through the rigours of studying STEM subjects without basic tools such as a computer can be unnerving. This is why we are donating the IT equipment to the networking academies in the belief that more students will be equipped to hone their skills in STEM and consequently pursue careers in STEM.”
Country Lead of Cisco, Nigeria, Sebastine Nzeabine, said: Cisco Networking Academy transforms the lives of learners, educators and communities through the power of technology, education and career opportunities.
“Critical to this is creating connections through access to infrastructure, forging opportunities by investing in people to help create a skilled economy and inclusion of all citizens to give them efficient technology solutions to address their unique local needs,’’ he said.
Eromosele added: “We are delighted to partner Cisco on this initiative, which is borne out of our shared belief in the revolution that lies ahead of Nigeria and Africa through technology, a revolution we do not only want to be part of, but lead. With synergies such as this between Cisco and Interswitch, we are confident we are building an army of competent scientists, engineers and problem solvers to whom we can entrust the future of the continent.”
There are over 200 Cisco Networking Academies in Nigeria, the highest in Africa.