Brian Kamau ’23

Pioneer International University, School of Science and Information Communication Technology, Kenya

Pioneer International University is an institution of higher learning accredited by the Government of Kenya through the Commission for University Education (CUE) as the regulator. The mission of the university is to be a world class market-driven university for society. At the core of its mission is innovation through top notch teaching/learning, research and community service learning. I joined Pioneer International University as a Computer Science Technical Assistant, and in my first few weeks I assisted the department in setting up a virtual learning space, creating profiles for both staff and students, helping to create modules for courses and presentations in preparation for the resumption of classes.

Pioneer International University, through its community service learning, 
exposed me to real life challenges affecting this part of the world. Moreover, the partnerships that the university possesses offered a great opportunity to understand the constantly evolving field of computer science in my country. These partnerships helped me understand the required skill sets that appeal to companies in today’s job market and future skills that would come in very handy. In an emerging culture of innovation, particularly in Kenya, it was interesting to explore the 
competing forces that are driving the technological change in the midst of technological democratization.

In addition, teaching alongside the lecturers helped to greatly enhance my debugging skills and polish my interpersonal skills, which are vital to a programmer. I learned how to efficiently and articulately communicate across a virtual platform as I interacted with students in the department. Interacting with the faculty also gave me an opportunity to be mentored and to learn from the leading minds in computer science in my country. I also learned two new programming languages: JavaScript and Python. All this helped me grow intellectually as I build towards the CS major.

I am most proud of the work I did on a project to create an online platform for the elderly residing at a care home nearby. This platform would ensure that residents were able to connect with all their loved ones and also allowed them to be able to order anything at the expense of the family. This was perhaps, for me, the most important aspect of the internship as it reiterated the importance of giving back to the community and reminded me that, as Gandhi put it, ‘Science without humanity, Knowledge without character’ are among the deadly sins.

I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the Class of 1972 as well as the ’68 Center for Career Exploration for making this whole experience possible. I am very thankful that I will be able to build towards my computer science major with knowledge of what lies ahead in this constantly evolving industry.