The Gradient Boost has announced a pre-seed investment from angel investor Dumebi Okwechime. The funds will help in product growth and test several key components of the overall vision to ensure more Nigerians climb the upward social mobility ladder by learning data science.
Dumebi has a deep contextual understanding of creating data science team sets while in the United Kingdom and Nigeria. This helps develop a better understanding of the skills required by the employers and add rigor to the program from a technical perspective. The complete team comprises of Emmanuel Sibanda (CEO), Jasmine Desvarieux (COO), Vivian Opondoh (CTO).
The Gradient Boost is an online learning platform targeting students aspiring for technical high-demand careers in data science. There are several self-learning options delivered from cost-effective platforms like Udemy and Coursera. However, they do come with various limitations on accountability and often result in 90% drop-out rates, lack of rigor, and low engagement. Several coding boot camps are mushrooming to address these issues by delivering more rigor, accountability, and a general emphasis on soft skills, training, and mentorships. As is custom, Any good art entails taking from what already works and adapting it further.
The team at Gradient Boost plans to build the ‘The Andela of Data Science’ through focused training, case studies, real-world projects, and offering flexible financial incentives that admit students at no cost into the program through the LEAP initiative. This is an acronym for Learn, Earn, and Pay that enables Nigerian students to be admitted to the program and repay the costs when they work on paid projects or secure a paid position later.
What does one gain from the program?
- Weekly practical training from leading data scientists across the continent.
- Exposing the students to the ambiguity of real-world business problems through case studies and local company projects.
- Proactively secure internships for the students
The team is currently running their Third Cohort. Alumni of the program have been hired in leading companies such as Sparkle, SpacePen, and Investec.