Google Education Programs and Tools for Tech-Savvy Africans
Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful. In Sub Saharan Africa, Google’s strategy is to get more users online by developing an accessible, relevant and sustainable internet ecosystem.
Google has developed a strong presence in Africa through its various education and technology programs and events tailors towards promoting and developing students’ knowledge and skills in technology; from developer events and competitions, free online courses, scholarships for students to G-Days for developers, programmers and young entrepreneurs in Africa.
From AfterschoolAfrica, here are must-know Google programs and resources for African developers, programmers and students with interest in computer technology.
Throughout history many great scientists developed their curiosity for science at an early age and went on to make groundbreaking discoveries that changed the way we live. In partnership with CERN, the LEGO Group, National Geographic and Scientific American, Google offers the annual Google Science Fair to help make today’s young scientists the rock stars of tomorrow. If you are a science inclined student with love for science and have a good idea for an experiment that you’d like to share with the world, Google Science Fair presents you a life time opportunity.
Google RISE – Roots in Science and Engineering – Awards are designed to promote and support Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics (STEM) and Computer Science (CS) education initiatives. The internet search giant grant awards to organizations working with K-12 (primary & secondary schools) and university students to provide enrichment programs in these fields.
The Google Student Ambassador Program is an opportunity for students to act as liaisons between Google and their universities. These ambassadors: Learn about innovative Google products and programs Plan and host fun events on campus, Act as a campus contact for Google teams, Help Google better understand each university’s culture.
Google offers The Google Anita Borg Memorial Scholarship for women in Europe, the Middle East and Africa to study in the field of computing and technology for Bachelors, Masters or PhD degrees
Would you like to: Create an app or site that solves health problems, understands crime patterns, or improves commerce? Better your local government or community and improve its efficiency? If you’ve got innovative ideas regarding apps which can improve the quality of life for communities or aid local governments in improving their services, then this is an opportunity for you.
The Google Apps Developer Challenge offer developers from Africa and across the world, the opportunity to show the world what they can do with Google Apps and the Google Drive API. Developers in 6 regions across the world will win prizes that include Chromebooks and up to $20,000 USD with other special prizes for students
The Google Online Marketing Challenge (GOMC) is an exciting opportunity for students to experience online marketing and creating online marketing campaigns using Google AdWords & Google+. As well, students and their professors can win great prizes. This is a great opportunity for students in classes such as Advertising, E-Commerce, Integrated Marketing, Communication, Management Information Systems, Marketing or New Media Technologies.
If you are aged 18-24, from Africa (South Africa, Algeria, Egypt, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Uganda, Tunisia), Europe or Middle East and want to make a real difference to the world whether in science, the arts, education, innovation or inspiration, then enter for the Zeitgeist Young Minds competition and get a chance to join some of the world’s top innovators and leaders at Google’s most prestigious event, Zeitgeist.
Google Code Jam is a coding competition in which professional and student programmers are asked to solve complex algorithmic challenges in a limited amount of time. If YOU want to match wits with coders across the African continent, test your skills on some tough algorithmic problems, or win a prize, Code is a competition you’ll want to consider.
Google’s Global Impact Award, launched in 2012, support organisations using technology and innovative approaches to tackle some of the world’s toughest human challenges.
Google is looking for nimble, entrepreneurial organisations that have a specific project that tests a big idea and a brilliant team with a healthy disregard for the impossible. Google’s first round of awards provided $23 million to seven organizations changing the world, of which four organisations will be working in Africa.
G-Days are a series of large scale events across several Sub-Saharan African Countries for developers, tech enthusiasts and entrepreneurs who are looking to make a splash online and in mobile. The event typically last for two days, split into the developer day (for developers and technologists) and the business day (for entrepreneurs) with the aim of showing them how to leverage Google tools in taking advantage of the opportunities offered by the internet and mobile.
Google Summer of Code is a global program that offers post-secondary student developers ages 18 and older stipends to write code for various open source software projects. Google have worked with open source, free software, and technology-related groups to identify and fund projects over a three month period. Since its inception in 2005, the program has brought together over 6,000 successful student participants and over 3,000 mentors from over 100 countries worldwide, all for the love of code.
Developer tools from Google
Following are resources from Google for anyone who wants to dive into or improve skills in web and/or mobile development fields. The resources are a collection of videos and text tutorial contents to learn the basics of different programming languages and developer tools. Simply follow respective link to the tutorial.
Python is a programming language that lets you work more quickly and integrate your systems more effectively. You can learn to use Python and see almost immediate gains in productivity and lower maintenance costs. Python runs on Windows, Linux/Unix, Mac OS X, and has been ported to the Java and .NET virtual machines.
Java is an object-oriented, platform-independent, multithreaded programming language that is specifically designed to let application developers “write once, run anywhere.” Java is currently one of the most popular programming languages in use, and is widely used from application software to web applications.
HyperText Marketup Language (HTML) is the predominant markup language for web pages while Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) is a simple mechanism for adding style (fonts, colors, spacing) to web documents. HTML5 is a standard for structuring and presenting content on the World Wide Web. HTML5 is the next major revision of the HTML standard, currently under development.
Google App Engine is a platform to write Java or Python applications for the web; it offers fast development and deployment; simple administration, with no need to worry about hardware, patches or backups; and effortless scalability.
Android is an open-source software stack for mobile phones and other devices. The Android Open Source Project (AOSP), led by Google, is tasked with the maintenance and further development of Android. Many device manufacturers have brought to market devices running Android, and they are readibly available around the world.
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