The Future of Work program (FOW) was designed to give Innovation Hub participants exposure to the latest digital trends transforming the local and global economies as part of the 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR). The students took a break in early October from their weekly routine of Leadership, Digital Skills and Soft Skills training and came together for a 6-day “camp” where they were given exposure to:

  • The latest digital technologies being exploited by South Africa’s leading companies. Technologies that were showcased included: Cloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning, Virtual & Augmented Reality, Big Data, Drones, Mobile Computing, Internet of Things, Additive Manufacturing, Block Chain, Nanotechnology, etc.;
  • Real-life business scenarios as they job shadowed for a day various digital marketing and software development professionals for a day in either corporate roles or as they operate their own businesses as entrepreneurs; and
  • Robotics – both man-machine interfaces, programming, and creating human-like designs through robot assembly and simple coding algorithms.

The goal of these sessions were to give the participants hands-on experience with the various technologies and learn from role models in the fields they aspire to obtain employment as a skilled digital worker so that they get inspired as to what a future job in digital skills could look like for themselves, as well as help them make a better-informed decision whether a creative or analytic track would be the best place for them to focus in future phases of iHub in-depth training – according to where their interests and aptitudes lie.

The six-day camp started out with guest lecturers who covered several 4IR topics such as Augmented Reality and Drones…

In days 2 & 3 the students took field trips out to the Launch Lab at Stellenbosch University where they heard motivational presentations from a couple of successful start-ups including Vollar and Custos.  Then it was off to spending time shadowing real corporate roles in software development and digital marketing.  We were very thankful for the investment that Responsive, RCS Parnibas and DigiBlu made in providing an excellent immersive experience of a day in the life of working in the digital economy of Cape Town….

The final 3 days of the FOW camp were spent studying and applying learning’s in Robotics.  The students got to assemble a real robot, understand how they move, then code the Robots and see how they respond to sensors; ending off with a Robot Wars team challenge…

The iHub leadership partnered with JEFA (Junior Engineers for Africa), a Joburg-based education organisation guided by the belief that people learn best through experience.  JEFA provided our participants the experience of building and programming a robot and essentially learned what it’s like to code a simple man-machine interface.

You can see our young people enjoying the Robot Wars competition – it was a great way to add another layer of fun and competition to their learning experience!