The Department of Information, Communication and Technology (ICT), under the Ministry Finance and Economic Planning, held a consultative meeting with the Lodwar Vocational Training Center (LVTC) IT Department, during which both sides agreed to work together to enhance the IT capacity of the students and strengthen cooperation.
The meeting come up about when the County ICT team received the first IT students from the institution for attachment and realized the skills gap. Therefore, the team decided to take a proactive approach to reach out to the IT Instructors to identify these gaps and figure out how best to assist in grow the department through collaboration.
“We are looking at a futurist way of developing IT professionals with the right skills within the county which will be for the betterment of the entire community,” said James Eripon, county Director of IT.
The county-run institution introduced the two-year IT Certificate course in 2017 and the first class had only four students; three of which are currently on attachment at the county IT Department. Its second class has 10 students which is an indication that the course is growing.
“From the interaction with the students, we saw we need to form a possible partnership to work together,” said Washington Malala, the county CICTO Technical Support and System Maintenance.
Lanka Ekaran, the county CICTO Software and Applications, concurred with Washington noting that although the students where well versed in theory, the practical skills needed improvement. Therefore, he suggested that the two parties should look also into sharing resources; hardware and software.
“We would like to encourage the IT professionals to address the students to exposure them, even as they go through the set curriculum, on the professional courses they need to pursue to have skills-based specifics like networking or security,” said Director Eripon.
In regards to involving the institution more in driving the IT agenda in the county, he said LVTC would be one of the stakeholders in the ICT Steering Committee that was being constituted.
Charles Rasare, the LVTC Manager, appreciated the IT Department calling for the meeting and recognized indeed more IT skills like networking and programming were need to take the students to the next level. He also looked forward to the cooperation between the two parties.
At the end of meeting, the parties suggested that a meeting with the top county executive concerned should be organized soon and will focus on how to expand cooperation.
Others in attendance included Peter Alimon (CICTO Networks and Security) and Emmanuel Emanikor (IT intern) from the county IT department. Aiyen Haron, Ekal Michael, Winnie Cheroitot and Samson Lowapa instructors from LVCT IT Department.