On June 17, Group TekZone’s founder and CEO Serges Lemo made the trip to personally witness the opening of the first TekZone Center in Douala. Located at Rond Point Maeture in Bonamoussadi, this center is equipped with 3D printer, laser engraver, robotics kits such as Lego EV3, measurement tools such as National Instruments’ MyDAQ . The main objective of this center is to equip local talent to solve problems locally by lowering barrier of access to necessary technologies.
Here are some comments from those present that day:
- “I came just by curiosity because my friend told me. I am staying because of what I saw”
- “It exceeded my wildest expectations”
- “Now I know that I can”
This last comment came from a senior electrical engineering student from a local university. June 17 was the first time in his life that he could touch and experiment with tools he had only learned about in books or simulated in computers. With unprecedented access to tools at the TekZone center, he can now prototype his ideas and create products to solve local problems; now he CAN.
Group TekZone comes with a unique approach in an ecosystem that provides local talent with all the tools necessary to innovate. This ecosystem includes:
An open e-learning platform centered around hands-on and project-based learning. With such an open platform, local entrepreneurs, professors, professionals are encouraged to create and post classes on this platform.
Each class posted on this platform is required to be between 50% and 100% practical. Therefore, student will need access to tools for the lessons. For those who cannot afford the tools, they can access to the tools in their TekZone center.
A network of professional mentors locally, in US and Europe to help guide the participants by sharing best practices and lessons learned from experiences in industry.
Business Services which include project assistance to help get to the first prototype, collaboration with incubation houses to help start a company, investor-project matching.
A network of corporate partners including non-profit organizations that can help by sponsoring various projects.
With this comprehensive approach, local talent in Cameroon can now turn their ideas into solutions and start contributing to the growing list of African innovations impacting the world.
Group TekZone’s goal plans to increase the number of TekZone Centers across Cameroon and Sub-Saharan Africa to help expand coverage of this unique access to technology. If you are interested in joining this movement, contact us.