Team Academy Curriculum Design Workshop at the University of Iringa

As part of the external consultants visit to Tanzania we organised a curriculum design workshop with the staff of the University of Iringa Team Academy on 10th to 12th of February. The idea was to create the foundation for the curriculum that will later on be submitted to the Tanzanian University Commission for approval in order to start a full Team Academy program in October 2015 with a full throttle.
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In the first morning, after checking in, we started to wonder what are the questions we should answer together. We came up with following questions:
  • What is the name of our program?
  • What is the output of our program? I.E. What the recent graduate knows and can do?
  • What is the justification for our program? Why we consider this program important?
  • What are the competences that our graduates will have? What are the levels of development in different competences?
  • How do our team entrepreneurs (i.e. students) learn the competences and attitudes?
    1. What courses will we have?
    2. What approach and learning tools will we use in the courses?
  • How do we assess the learning in this program?
  • What kind of assignments should we have in our program?
In the afternoon we started to answer them, one by one. It took us three days, but by the end of it, we got through most of them. We did not dive into the details of the contents of the courses, but otherwise we covered everything.
I think, the most important thing in creating a new curriculum is the dialogue among the founders that creates the shared understanding about what we are doing and creating. The second issue is then to write it all out into the form of curriculum, which is the job we are doing right now.
Written by and pictures courtesy of Team Academy Senior Experts, TANZICT external consultants, Ville Keränen & Jukka Hassinen, Partus Ltd

Pre-Incubation and Technology Transfer Training for Universities and SIDO started

Last week 9-12.2. training for Tanzanian universities and SIDO was held in Buni. Altogether 13 participants from CBE, DIT, MUST, NM-AIST, SUZA, UB, UI and SIDO were chosen for the training and joined first module of trainings. Also, one day training for government officials was organized 13.2. for participants from Ministry of Communication, Science and Technology, Tanzania Private Sector Foundation, Ministry of Education and Vocational Training, Confederation of Tanzania Industries, COSTECH, SIDO and Tanzania Chamber of Commerce, Industry & Agriculture.

University and SIDO participantsUniversity and SIDO participants having a group photo after the training with the trainer Marko Sorri and Teemu Seppälä.

Few words from the trainer Mr. Marko Sorri:

It has been a truly interesting and intensive week for me here in Tanzania working with TANZICT staff members and university representatives. We had three day training for the local university contacts who are involved to incubation activities. The idea is to bring some examples of successful programs, practical tools and developed work methods from Finnish Innovation Ecosystem to be localized here.

In addition to the knowledge and experience sharing, we do learning-by-doing as we have agreed to start to collect the identified business ideas from each university. Then on weekly basis we aim to create some proposals for each business ideas to take the next step and also to leverage the toolkit of each business coach involved for this program. It was really interesting to interact with these people during the training and I personally learned a lot of the local circumstances.

We had also a nice opportunity to hear three local startup pitches (Soka, Jamaa Technologies / Kweebo and Guumzo), which will travel this week to Nairobi to participate on AITEC East Africa. Coachable teams who are willing to work hard, expose to different kind of tests & events and do have commitment to execute the business plan will be champions. Good luck on this journey!

On Thursday we organized a workshop with the local organizations and ministries, which do have a vital role on the Innovation Eco System. Initiated projects should be connected and create understanding how all the stakeholders are able to provide support for the innovation system. Efficient incubation programs can gain great results, but it takes time, commitment and co-operation.

Thank you very much for all of the great people at TANZICT organization. You are doing great job! I’m looking forward to interact with the universities and their representatives during the next couple of months over the video sessions. I’ll be back on May and hopefully we can then meet with you!

Asante, kwaheri

FemTanz training for female entrepreneurs – Apply now!

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The Female Entrepreneurship program FemTanz is going for its second round in Tanzania and application period to participate is now!

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania: Feb – March 2015 (6 days). Aimed at women who wish to SUBSTANTIALLY grow their businesses.
Closing date: 6 Feb 2015.
Queries: Ms Beata Minga, SIDO +255 250299
tm@sido.go.tz or minga.beata1@gmail.com

Download the brochure to read more:

 Advert 2nd draft 27 Jan 2015

Application form in Word-format:

FEMTECH ENTREPRENEURS Application Form Tanzania Jan 2015 FINAL

Application from in PDF:

FEMTECH ENTREPRENEURS Application Form Tanzania Jan 2015 FINAL

Relaxed learning event with serial entrepreneur Miika Perä

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Entrepreneurs of Iringa Team Academy and the members of Rlabs Iringa were lucky to have a young and successful entrepreneur visiting Iringa on Saturday 10th of January. Mr. Miika Perä shared an inspiring story about building your own company as a young and passionate entrepreneur while you are still studying.

Mr. Miika Perä is a growth oriented start-up entrepreneur from Finland. He is one of the co-founders of JaloHelsinki, a smoke alarm company which he started with his partners from a scratch. The key of their product is a nice looking design, which is really rare in a smoke alarm business. Special attention has been paid on usability too. So far, they have sold more than 300 000 smoke alarms. Mr. Perä is also a co-founder of Ambronite “The world’s first drinkable meal that fulfills the daily nutrition recommendations”. Ambronite is created for the busy people who have no time for cooking during the day, but who are still willing to take care of their health. All the ingredients of Ambronite are 100% natural.

The participants of the conversational event found the stories really interesting and inspiring. They also got some new ideas for their future projects. Especially the entrepreneurs of Iringa Team Academy felt it really encouraging to hear how young Miika was when he started his first business. He confirmed that to be the best time, because when you are young, you are only responsible of yourself and you have all your time to make your dreams come true. Another great idea from Miika was to turn the frustration about something into a business. That is how it worked with Ambronite.

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Miika shows how to use Ambronite.

Teampreneurs were impressed about the patience that Miika had to be ready to wait more than 1000 days from getting the idea to the point when you actually have the products in the shops. The idea to invite professionals to help you, when you don’t have the skills needed, was a great way to open your mind. The audience also realized that there is always a way to do things and get needed expertise – even with a low budget. The participants were really excited to taste Ambronite and see how unique the product is. That made them think what could be the markets for a similar thing here in Africa. On that point you could already feel some new business ideas in the air!

Read more about the companies from www.jalohelsinki.com and www.ambronite.com

Writer Sisko Mäkinen, Junior Expert working in Iringa Team Academy January – March 2015.

Photo credit: Mika Laaksonen.

TANZICT blog 2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for TANZICT blog. Most of the viewers coming from Tanzania while United States of America & Finland are not far behind. TANZICT appreciates all our blog visitors who have spent their time visiting the blog, reading our contents, sharing the stories and giving us feedback. Looking forward for a great year on 2015.

Here's an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 32,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 12 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.