Choolwe Lubinda recently joined BongoHive Consult as an Intern Software Developer. She joined BongoHive Consult under the USAID YouthLead Ambassador programme. The YouthLead Ambassador Programme is a 6-month professional and leadership for young changemakers who want to play a key role in bringing the benefits of YouthLead to changemakers, raising visibility and awareness about the YouthLead platform as a resource and networking hub for changemakers.
Choolwe’s interest in computers was sparked by a trip she took while in secondary school.
“I spent my secondary school years at Kasisi Girls’ High School and it was there that I gained interest in computers, during a trip for our geography projects. There weren’t any serious computer-related classes at the time so my interest started off of that one trip. In the beginning, I was interested in accounting but that changed when my curiosity in web development and design was sparked.”
To take her interest even further, Choolwe started doing some research on Computer Science and I.T. She particularly got interested in Computer Science when she learnt that it involved software development. She then proceeded to study at DMI St. Eugene University where she graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science.
Choolwe draws her inspiration from the work culture of people in her field, especially from the women because they are breaking the stereotype that women cannot do computer-related courses.
“My goals include me creating similar opportunities for other people to ensure that they gain practical knowledge in their field of interest. Ultimately, I wish to start up my own company. The specifics of which I am still establishing.”
She now shares an experience about her first day at BongoHive.
When I arrived at BongoHive, I felt a little awkward and out of place as I was the first person to arrive but I am not an entirely new person at BongoHive.
In the previous years, I used to have programming classes with Asikana Network but I was coming here for the first time in a long time. I did not recognise any of the people I saw and I was also not so sure about what the structures are and what was exactly required from me.
As I was wondering what to do, Silumesii Maboshe, the Director for BongoHive Consult communicated to me what I can do for the day. He oriented me on what platforms are used for communications and collaboration and how to use them. He also sent me some tasks and kept me up to speed with some of the projects that are currently running.
I also had the opportunity to take part in the meetings although I wasn’t too sure what exactly they were trying to do in the beginning, I did some research on what was been discussed in the meeting to get a better understanding. Luckily, a summary of the meeting was sent which even gave me a better understanding.
Despite joining BongoHive after most of the projects had already started, it allowed me to get straight to the practical work. Even though I had the task of catching up, getting hands-on with the projects helped me to learn as much as I could.
I have to admit that I am not the most social person so I was basically working in a separate room from some of the team members that I found at the office, but I’m sure that will change.
The fact that BongoHive has an option of either working remotely or from the office is great because I know that even if I cannot be on-site, I will not miss what I have to do for the day. Having the daily and weekly meetings keeps me in the loop of what should be done and how much has already been done.
I wish to learn more from BongoHive and put into practice what I learnt at University. I would also like to build relationships with the team beyond the workspace.
As BongoHive, we recognize the value and new skills that young talent can bring to the development of viable solutions and we are keen to create a pipeline of top software engineering talent.