The annual Techie. Entrepreneurial. Nigerian. Talented. (TENT) gathering was hosted by Benson Idahosa University, Benin City, Edo –State. The 3 day event which lasted from Tuesday, 18 to Thursday 20 November, 2014 was attended by 320 students from 6 tertiary institutions across Nigeria. The theme for TENT 2014 was “See the Need, Take the Lead” created with the aim of jump-starting the culture of ICT innovation amongst participants.
The TENT gathering featured a wide-range of entrepreneurs, technology and IT experts who delivered the opening and closing keynote addresses as well as facilitated the techie and entrepreneurial sessions.
The opening keynote speakers at the #TENT2014 event were Gbenga Sesan – Executive Director, PIN, Bishop Faith Emmanuel Benson-Idahosa – President, Benson Idahosa University and Sola Amusan – Microsoft’s Citizenship Manager.
The closing keynote address was delivered by Dr. Chris Uwaje – Founder/Chief Software Architect and CEO of Mobile Software Solutions.
Day 1 of the event featured a moderated panel of 3 young tech entrepreneurs who discussed the major ingredients of building a successful brand in the Nigerian environment namely Iyinoluwa Aboyeji – Co-founder, Andela Institute, Nkechi Okwuone – Open Data Manager, Edo State and Founder of Sabi Hub and John Obidi – Founder, ObidiSocial.com.
Day 2 of the event was anchored by techie, entrepreneurial and innovation hub speakers: Osita Nwoye – Founder, Fonebase Labs, Oluseun Onigbinde – Co-founder, Budgit, Deji Aladejebi – Founder, DabarObjects Solutions, Esther Okoye – CEO, Distronet International, Femi Bayode – freelance mobilizer, Ommo Clark – Founder, Ibez Technologies, Olufunbi Falayi – Co-founder, Passion Incubator and Dr. Paschal Iwuh – Co-founder, The African Network.
As part of Paradigm Initiative Nigeria’s mission to help young people discover opportunities, Adebola Agbaje – Project Manager, TENT/Digital Jobs, enlightened participants about the need to learn financial independence through #DigitalJobs. Participants were encouraged to be innovative and develop business ideas that can change the world starting from their immediate environment. They were also urged to begin taking the lead in the unlimited business opportunities in Nigeria.
In addition, the final day showcased many young ICT talents amongst the participants. Critical evaluation and feedback were given by the panel of mentors and tech experts present at the event.Students from Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, emerged winners of the Clash of The Campuses competition, winning the Taiwo Bankole Ogunyemi Prize and a cash prize of N120,000. First and second runners-up were Nnamdi Azikwe University and University of Benin who were also presented with awards and cash prizes of N70,000 and N50,000 respectively.
“Our role is to help students make the best of their time in school so that they graduate with tech businesses or business plans that can attract investors.” said Gbenga Sesan, the PIN Executive Director. “Our partners and event sponsors make this happen, and we are grateful for their continued support.”
TENT 2014 was supported by the National Information Technology Development Agency, NITDA.
About Paradigm Initiative Nigeria
Paradigm Initiative Nigeria (PIN) is a social enterprise that connects underserved Nigerian youth with Information and Communication Technology (ICT) opportunities; with specific concern about the ill effects of unemployment and cybercrime, among other vices that limit the potential contribution of young Nigerians to the nation’s economy. Having worked with government, civil society, private institutions and international organizations including the United Nations agencies, PIN has worked in ICT education, telecenter support, ICT applications in rural areas, etc. PIN’s projects include Ajegunle.org; Internet Safety, Security and Privacy Initiative for Nigeria (ISSPIN) and Techie.Entrepreneurial.Nigerian.Talented (TENT). PIN opened an ICT Policy Office in the Nigerian capital city of Abuja, in April 2013, to focus on Internet Freedom and other ICT Policy-related issues. Over the next year, PIN’s Ajegunle L.I.F.E. program will be extended to locations in North East and South East Nigeria.