Home | Off the Press | News for youth | Media | Get In Touch |

Friday, April 29, 2016

Of life and its Boxes!

One of John Mayer’s interesting quotes is that life is like a box of crayons…. He goes further and states that most people are like the 8-color boxes, but what we should be really looking for are the 64-color boxes with the sharpeners on the back…. He obviously fancies himself to be a 64-color box, though he admits he has a few missing…

I have been mulling over the last few weeks of this little concept called work-life balance! It is in that spirt that I happily dragged a few friends for a rather interesting and different talk at the All Saints Cathedral one evening after work early last week! The subject of the discussion is an article for another day but one speaker really struck a chord with me…Her presentation was on life and its little boxes that society and perhaps our own selves are so driven and pressured to tick off as we go along this journey we call life…

I’d like to think that most people have goals and live life trying to pursue them for overall satisfaction, self-esteem and purpose, but I also know that others including our family and friends alike may have their own agenda and desires that they would like to realize through us! And then there is also society and its norms and pressures that add an additional layer to boxes we are expected to tick off at a certain age to conform to certain acceptable standards.

Now trouble seemingly starts to brew in your camp when you either do not have goals, so you go with the flow or you have goals and don’t stick your guns out to defend them or you just down rightly refuse to conform to certain societal standards then others (read society) start to think there is something inherently wrong with you.

The speaker gave us her own life example; it was neither meant to be spiteful nor filled with doses of vanity but rather her own illustration of her own life boxes…and the call that we should individually choose our own boxes based on what we want and desire at a person level and not because it is perhaps expected of us especially as women!

One of the earliest boxes we have in life is education…the speaker mused that in that category she nailed each box by doing well in school and got additional ‘’bonga points’’ for taking on school captain and the most disciplined student right from primary school through to secondary…. off course this soared her easily to campus where she took a ‘’prestigious’’ course befitting of such a good girl.

Now in her mid-twenties, with a solid education at hand her next boxes to quickly tick off were; landing that job in a blue-chip company to be the envy of her peers, finding a suitable mate, getting hitched and starting a family in that order before hitting the big 3.0! Being the super achiever she clearly is, she managed to do all that by 25 and even went further sadly to change careers (because she didn’t have a say in what she actually studied for), contemplate divorce (because she really didn’t know her partner before they got married), attempt suicide and challenge social stereotypes by age 29!

I like happy endings and luckily for our speaker so did she… and so her story had a great ending that left everyone in the room in tears…the point I took home with me that night was that there is nothing wrong with having goals and dreams. I am an avid fan of the quote ‘if your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough..’ but we need to always remember why we do certain things. If they are for others we may easily get by doing them, but one day we may feel frustrated and disappointed because we are not being true to our own selves. I also appreciated the need to develop thick skin. Even if society may pressure us to behave in a certain way or accomplish certain boxes by a certain age, life is not a race and even if it were the only contender you should be racing with is yourself and your own pace and speed!

So this long weekend I will be defiantly take time to reflect on my boxes, the big ones and the small ones too, the colored ones and those that need more color in them as well as throwing out those boxes that weren’t really mine!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Andela Kenya Fellow Cohort VIII

Andela Kenya Class VIII Fellowship: June 2016 - June 2020

Nairobi, Kenya 

Dream of using technology to change the world?
Join the Andela movement and help ensure that while the digital revolution may have begun in Silicon Valley, its future will be written in Lagos, Nairobi, and cities across Africa.

What is Andela?
A four-year, paid Technical Leadership Program designed to shape you into an elite software developer. Through your training and work with top global technology companies, you’ll master the professional and technical skills needed to become a technology leader, both on the continent and around the world.
The Andela Fellowship Application Process
All applicants need to go through the Home Study curriculum to understand the very basics of software development. Applicants that read through our Home Study curriculum thoroughly have a better chance of getting into the Andela Fellowship than those who do not. So take your time to go through our Home Study Curriculum even if you have not made up your mind about applying.

Stage 1: Application and Aptitude Assessment
First you’ll complete a free application so we can learn more about you. Once we receive your application, we’ll email you an online test that measures logical reasoning and personality fit. (You’ll receive an email with next steps within 2 days of applying).

Stage 2: Home Study
Then you’ll need to complete an introduction to software development self-study course focused on Python. During the course, you’ll complete a Proctor test that will evaluate your knowledge of the content you’ve learned. You will also be invited to a Slack community called ‘Open Andela’ to help guide and encourage you throughout the process.

Stage 3: In-Person Interviews
If selected you’ll be invited to a panel of interviews made up of staff members and fellows at an Andela campus. (You’ll receive an email 1 week prior to the interview stage).

Stage 4: Two Week Bootcamp
Successful applicants participate in a two-week, full-time bootcamp at an Andela campus led by senior developers. You’ll be expected to learn independently as well as work on a team to deliver a final project. We’re looking for work ethic, passion and teamwork.

The highest performing participants are accepted into Andela’s four-year Technical Leadership Program. 
For inquiries, please read the application FAQs and Home Study FAQs. If you still have unanswered questions, please send an email to kenya.apply@andela.com.

More About the Andela Fellowship
Andela is a new kind of academic experience. It’s sort of like a university, except instead of paying tuition, you earn a healthy income and benefits. Once you're done with basic training and ready to advance, we place you as a member of a remote team with one of our partner companies around the globe within 6 months. You'll get to apply your new knowledge to real work, while Andela provides you with ongoing professional development and coaching to ensure that you evolve with the industry and graduate with the maximum potential for long term success.
As an Andela Fellow, you are also eligible for continued training and employment with Andela for four years. . After the four year program, Andela Fellows can be expected to; start technology companies, work directly with client companies as employees or continue to help train software engineers as Andela.

Apply today and see if you have what it takes!
Recruitment Schedule for Andela Kenya Cohort VIII
Application Deadline: May 21st, 2016

Home Study Test : The Home Study test is a requirement for making it through our selection process. Please study and complete the Home Study curriculum before your test. 

Interview Dates: June 2nd- June 3rd, 2016

Bootcamp: June 6th- June 17th, 2016

MSFS Scholarship for Students from Africa

As of Fall 2014, the Master of Science in Foreign Service (MSFS) at Georgetown University began offering a full-tuition scholarship for a talented graduate student from sub-Saharan Africa.
MSFS is a two-year, full-time graduate degree program in international affairs. Students will take courses in international relations, international trade, international finance, statistics and analytical tools, and history. In addition, students choose an area of concentration such as Global Politics and Security, International Development, or Global Business and Finance.
Application requirements include:
  • A completed undergraduate degree from an accredited university and a strong academic record;
  • One set of standardized test scores: TOEFL/IELTS or GRE/GMAT (for more information on which test applicants need to take, visit http://msfs.georgetown.edu/admissions/faq#standardized);
  • Completion of a course in microeconomics and a course in macroeconomics, or ability to complete both courses before August 1 of their matriculating year;
  • Professional work experience, ideally in a field related to their future professional goals. Students have an average of four years of work experience prior to joining MSFS.
For complete information on required application items, please visit http://msfs.georgetown.edu/admissions/howtoapply.
Special consideration will be given to applicants from:
  • Côte d'Ivoire
  • Ghana
  • Kenya
  • Liberia
  • Nigeria
  • Senegal
  • South Africa
To be considered for the scholarship, applicants must submit all required application materials (online application, personal statement, official transcripts and test scores, letters of recommendation). The scholarship will be awarded based on the strength of the student's application in the admissions process.

The application deadline for Fall 2017 is January 15, 2017.

For more information on the academic program, visit http://msfs.georgetown.edu. For information on how to apply, visit http://msfs.georgetown.edu/admissions.