Applications for the 2023 BRICS Future Skills Challenge are now open.

The SA BRICS Business Council is looking for the country’s best up-and-coming tech gurus to represent the country in this year’s BRICS Future Skills Challenge.

The challenge is described as a multi-day online “skills Olympics” or “Hackathon competition” where youngsters from BRICS countries – Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa – will be solving real-world problems in their specific future skill areas.

Hosted by South Africa, the event will take place in Johannesburg from 12 – 15 September 2023.

This year’s programme will focus on energy, water and health.

The SA BRICS Business Council is searching for 120 local participants, including individual participants and teams, to apply.

“Those selected to participate will solve real-world problems in their specific skill area, supported by subject experts.”

Those who are eligible to apply are students from universities and Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges and professionals aged between 16 and 35.

If selected, the youngsters will compete against young people from the other BRICS countries and all travel expenses will be covered.

Founder of TechWays and Project Lead at BRICS Future Skills, Joanne Brink, explained that the benefits of participating in the BRICS Future Skills Challenge extend beyond recognition as one of SA’s top tech minds.

“If you are selected, you will receive training and exposure to real-world case studies. You’ll receive a certificate, international experience to add to your CV and an opportunity to benchmark your skills at a global level. Those who perform well in the competition will be introduced to employers and will be recognised as one of the top South Africans in their field,” she said.

Brink added: “The competition will also help clarify where there is a skills deficit and where South Africa should be concentrating its efforts to ensure we build a pipeline of future tech skills.”

Meanwhile, training will be provided for all competitors under the guidance of experts.

Menzi Mhlongo of Digify Africa who supports the internet-marketing stream said: “Opportunities like this will help our young people gain real-world experience and make their CV stand out in a crowd.”

One of the interested participants, David Odimegwu, believes he will be exposed to how other countries like China handle data science and analytics.

“I will make new contacts who are data scientists and hope to build a relationship with them and hope to be employed by one of the companies who make up the BRICS network.”

Several skills categories in which South Africans will compete:

●            Aircraft maintenance

●            Agri IOT

●            Building information modelling

●            Cyber security

●            Data science

●            Digital twin

●            Drones

●            Internet marketing

●            Manufacturing robotics

●            Mobile app development

●            Renewable energy

●            Robotic process automation.

Interested parties should visit www.bricsfutureskills.co.za for more information and apply by 30 June 2023. – SAnews.gov.za

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