We are excited to announce our recent partnership with The Gradient Boost to drive our mission of “democratizing world-class AI and data education and opportunities to underrepresented groups and regions”, in a cause-related alliance.
In this brief article, we make public what this partnership entails for both parties including our members and the African data and AI ecosystem.
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About Port Harcourt School of AI and TGB. 🤷🏽♂️🤷🏽♀️
Partnership Details in Summary (TL; DR)
We (Port Harcourt School of AI) partner with The Gradient Boost to further our cause of enabling world-class data education for underrepresented groups and regions. The Gradient Boost is data science as a service platform, and together with TGB, we are collaborating to enable quality data education for our community members, as well as providing opportunities (such as job openings) for them.
About Port Harcourt School of AI and TGB
What We Are About at Port Harcourt School of AI?
We are a non-profit AI and data learning community with the mission of democratising world-class AI and data education and opportunities to underrepresented groups and regions. Our recent efforts have been geared towards being established as a proper social organization and expanding across Africa to further drive our cause.
Founding Port Harcourt School of AI in 2018 came out of the need to build a community where data science and AI learners and practitioners could connect and share knowledge, opportunities, and experience. We have operated as a community for over 2 years, but this year we have been doing a lot of work to scale our mission and help people in the community gain not just expertise in AI and data education, but also making those opportunities for growth and social contributions accessible to them. - Stephen Oladele (Lead Volunteer, Port Harcourt School of AI).
What We Are About at The Gradient Boost
Ever needed a mentorship-guided path to learning data science, with all the added benefits of a fellowship, internship, and even job-placement? The Gradient Boost is a data science as a service platform with the mission of building the data science ecosystem and training curious minds across the continent with the necessary skills to pursue a career within data science. They want to create stronger data science learners in the African ecosystem!
They train students looking to get into data science through a 6-month full-time fellowship. Through their training, you will receive mentorship from data science professionals in the form of multiple weekly tutorials, peer-to-peer learning through group projects and you will work on real-world case studies and projects from different companies. You will not be required to pay upfront fees for their training.
Beyond these, they also allow companies to hire and build remote teams.
Details On The Partnership
We believe in a cause-related alliance such as this, communication and transparency not just between both parties, but also with the public is crucial for the long-term success of this alliance. And hence, it is important to know what the community and ecosystem can expect (at a high level) from both parties in this alliance.
Why This Partnership is Essential?
As you perhaps saw in the section above, the cause that drives Port Harcourt School of AI is pretty similar to the mission The Gradient Boost runs with.
At the Port Harcourt School of, we are always thinking about how we can contribute to the African data and AI ecosystem by democratising access to world-class AI and data education and opportunities to underrepresented groups and regions. This partnership furthers that cause because not only are we going to leverage one of the fastest-growing data education organizations in Africa but together with TGB, we are going to figure out ways we can get learners to solve social problems with their skills and help improve various sectors in Africa that are in an urgent need of talents to solve pressing societal issues.
This partnership will also further our cause of providing "... opportunities to underrepresented groups and regions" because it will lead to more jobs and more placements for members in the regions we establish our community.
How This Partnership Will Benefit Port Harcourt School of AI?
At the Port Harcourt School of AI, we have always been driven by the need to provide quality, world-class data education to our members while we focus on preparing them to solve societal challenges. We have mostly been caught up in trying to provide quality education for our members, and have not had as much impact with trying to create a platform that can leverage the skills and talents of our members to solve some of Africa's pressing issues that AI and data technologies can prefer solutions to.
This partnership mostly enables our NPO (a non-profit organization) to entrust the core education of individuals and members of our organization to an organization with a similar cause, while we focus on doing what a community does best—providing a platform for sharing, collaboration, and societal problem-solve to our members (which, as we mentioned, are mostly going to be focused on underrepresented groups and people in such regions).
This does not mean that we will stop our learning and education programs, no. Our learning programs are still going to focus on providing quality AI and data education through workshops, meetups, and other community efforts. But at least we can rest assured that our members are developing their skills on an individual level, while we provide the necessary platform for them to benefit from what the community has to offer and even give back to the community.
How This Partnership Will Benefit The Gradient Boost?
The Gradient Boost, as mentioned, is one of the fastest-growing data education startups in Africa and looking into their learning programs and mission, it's easy to see why they are making so much progress.
Asides onboarding new, enthusiastic learners (with a community-driven spirit!) to their organization, we (at the Port Harcourt School of AI) are also keen on helping TGB build a community around their learners, which we think is absolutely vital for a learner-driven organization such as theirs.
Beyond these benefits, we believe that work from both organizations that drives the cause for this partnership will do so much to contribute more talents and opportunities to the African AI and data ecosystem.
How It Will Benefit The African Data and AI Ecosystem?
The partnership between both parties is to drive a unifying cause of improving the data and AI ecosystem education in Africa through affordable and accessible learning and programs. This includes creating and promoting learning programs from both parties (as well as this partnership) that drive this cause and improve awareness and interest in AI and data technologies in the African ecosystem.
Beyond learning, it will also open doors to employment and entrepreneurship opportunities for African Data Scientists and Machine Learning engineers.
What To Look Forward To?
While there's so much cool stuff this alliance will contribute to the African data and AI ecosystem, here are few things you should forward to in the coming months;
Hosting workshops to educate executives and stakeholders in various sectors on the need for AI and data science for their sector, and how communities and organizations can help them bridge the talent gap in their organization.
Hosting hackathons and monthly-themed events and guided problem-solving programs to enable learners to collaborate with other learners across Africa and solve challenges both on data science competitions (like Zindi) and through community-curated programs.
Providing members (of the Port Harcourt School of AI) unique access to quality data and AI education by The Gradient Boost.
Co-hosting podcast sessions and workshops with experts in the AI and data ecosystem within and outside Africa.
And so much more you should definitely look forward to from this alliance.
While this alliance will most likely take effect by January next year, you can keep in touch with what both organizations are doing via Twitter @tg_boost (for The Gradient Boost) and @PHCSchoolOfAI (for Port Harcourt School of AI).
While you are at it, we (the Port Harcourt School of AI) have two events coming up by December; one is powered by Google AI and Google Crowdsource (learn more about—and sign up for the workshop here), and the other is a career recess program for Data Scientists in Africa. Do keep in touch.
Follow us on Twitter @PHCSchoolOfAI ( Port Harcourt School of AI) so you can stay up-to-date. We'll begin our newsletters soon (sorry for the inconvenience 😊).
Are you excited about this partnership? What are your expectations from this partnership? Let us know by leaving a comment below.