Nairametrics| Africa’s labor statistics can be quite overwhelming when considered. Africa has approximately 200 million people between the ages of 15 and 24. By 2040, the continent is expected to be home to the world’s largest labour force, with an estimated working age population of one billion. Still the continent is plagued with low literacy levels and many employers continue to complain local skills gap as one of the major bottlenecks to growth.
To counteract these challenges and give African youths an opportunity, IBM has created the ‘New Collar’ development program, which is aimed at developing sought-after skills in cybersecurity, data science, artificial intelligence, cloud etc. instead of focusing on the acquisition of university degrees.
IBM plans to achieve this through a free, cloud-based online learning environment that will provide a range of programs from basic IT literacy to highly sought-after advanced skills including social engagement, digital privacy, and cyber protection.
“In order to find solutions to Africa’s challenges, industries across the spectrum need to enable the existing and future workforce to perform at the forefront of technologies such as cognitive and cloud computing. This will be the key to spurring economic growth,” Guardian quotes Country General Manager, IBM South Africa, Hamilton Ratshefola as saying.