Thando Hlongwane

Thando is a Computer Science student at the University of Cape Town.

An avid believer in the transformative power of technology, Thando is playing his part to link young people to opportunities where they can use their technological skills while catalyzing the growth of new businesses.

His start-up, Zaio, is a plaform that gamifies a student software developers journey to gain real world skills – through coding challenges and practical experience – to help them land their dream job.

Student developers on the platform have access to resources and a community which helps them build their skills. They can then put their skills to the test by taking on coding challenges. Only after reaching a certain level of competence the student developers get to apply for opportunities to gain real-world, practical experience by building prototypes for startups.

Ultimately, students build an IT Skills profile which can be used by IT recruiters to make better recruitment decisions.

Thando believes that the partnerships he creates between students and start-ups will make tech development more accessible and reduce the barriers to innovation while upskilling students and making them more employable and prepared for industry.

Thando hopes Zaio student developers will become highly sought-after in the coming years and receive job offers from world-class technology companies like Google and Amazon.

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