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Aug 18, 2014

Youths Converge for the Mobile App Workshop and Competition 2014

“Inspiring Solutions to Global Challenges through Innovation and Creativity.”  That’s the theme of a seminar being hosted by the Public Utilities Commission in which tech savvy youths are being trained to create their own mobile apps.  It was an initiative that was launched a few weeks ago and today dozens of teenagers gathered in Belize City for the start of the workshop and the competition.  Duane Moody has that story.

 

Duane Moody, Reporting

Young Innovation Programme Belize is an initiative by the Public Utilities Commission to bring together aspiring computer literate youths to field ideas that will foster the future of Belizean technology. Today, the 2014 mobile app workshop and competition opened at the Ramada Belize City Princess, where the seminar is taking place. It comes on the heels of a similar program launched by the Ministry of Energy, Science, Technology and Public Utilities.

 

Colin Young

Dr. Colin Young, C.E.O., Ministry of Science & Technology

“Today’s gathering is not about millions of dollars, but rather about innovation and innovative potential that exists among all the young men and women in this room. Today’s gathering is about how we can inspire young Belizeans to become innovators; it is more about how we can inspire young Belizeans to become creators of technological applications rather than just consumers. Indeed today’s gathering is to launch the Public Utilities Commission’s 2014 innovation program through the inaugural mobile application development workshop and competition.”

 

Winners of the competition will receive a tablet, as well as a year’s worth of internet and will get a chance to enter their product in the Young Innovators’ Programme of the International Telecommunications Union at its annual Telecom World conference in November. Executive Director of the Bright Path Foundation, Bevil Wooding, is facilitating the workshop.

 

Bevil Wooding

Bevil Wooding, Executive Director, Bright Path Foundation

“We are living in a mobile world. The rise of mobile phones, mobile devices from tablets and smart phones to now devices like Chrome Cast, Amazon fire TV are proliferating the market place. And with the proliferation, with that increase, it is transforming how we interact. And with this new world order of mobile, you have a new set of generals leading the world…those are the application developers; the people who write the software that drive these mobile devices. By the end of this week, I trust that those participants who have signed up with become part of that growing global army; that not only shape and transform life here in Belize and across the Caribbean, but who can change the world.”

 

A total of forty-five youths from across the country, along with mentors gathered today inside the Prince Room for the week-long workshop on how to create an app that can be used by the general public including youths. So what are some of the ideas that these future entrepreneurs and innovators have in mind?

 

Kieffer Young

Kieffer Young, Participant, Mobile App Workshop 2014

“I expect to learn how to program apps and build apps to create a better foundation. I always wanted to be a computer engineer from I’m small.”

 

Duane Moody

“What idea do you have for an app? What do you think that is needed?”

 

Kieffer Young

“Like I’m creating an easier way for things to function.”

 

Krystal Black

Krystal Black, Participant, Mobile App Workshop 2014

“I decided to be a part of it because I like computers and I have a great interest in them. And I think that this would help me to know better about technology and learn to create an app.”

 

Duane Moody

“A part of the competition is all about creating an app. Give us an idea of what you would like to create and why?”

 

Krystal Black

“I would like to create a social app as well as for tourists to know the destination of places that they are going and tell them about it. And also if they want to ask questions, they can ask the question and we will give the answers for the app.”

 

Duane Moody for News Five.

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