October 26, 2021

A bridge to Industry – The case of an AIMS Alumna

Africa’s youths are at the heart of the AIMS innovation and transformation ecosystem which consists of a set of academic and non-academic programs expertly tailored to provide AIMS learners with a unique postgraduate training experience on the continent. 

AIMS offers a Master’s in mathematical sciences, including a Co-operative option. The Cooperative is an 18-month long and takes a work-integrated learning approach by combining course work with practical industry experience. This allows students to apply their scientific knowledge to real-world problems while gaining work experience in an industrial environment.   

Enter Gladys Muthoni Kamau, a Data analyst at KCB Rwanda Plc and recent graduate from the AIMS Rwanda Centre, Class of 2020/2021 under the AIMS MSc. in Mathematical Sciences, Cooperative Program. While at AIMS Gladys opted for the Co-Op direction zeroing in on its 6 months internship option. The desire to apply theoretical knowledge practically for all intents and purposes was very appealing to her.  

“This motivated me because it created a transition from the classroom environment to the industry which allowed me to implement and increase my knowledge and skills of what I had learnt in class,” she said. 

 As part of her Master’s Programme, she interned at the Kenya Commercial Bank (KCB) Rwanda Plc, in the Customer Experience Department for six months purposely to practice theoretical knowledge acquired in school and develop new professional networks in the corporate world.  

While working at the bank, Gladys applied the programming skills that she developed while at AIMS. She developed dashboards to visualize bank performance and used R and Python in analyzing financial data. Beyond the technical skills, she also gives credit to skills such as communication, collaboration skills to participate as a great team player, which in turn helped her to contribute to successful assignments and meeting deadlines in a competent manner.   

“Not all skills are taught in class, there is so much more to learn while on the field and particularly during the internship,” said Gladys.  

In her 6-month internship experience, the KCB management accorded Gladys the right guidance, support, supervision and tools to perform her assignment successfully.   Together with her flexible supervisor, Gladys set achievable objectives with deadlines that she fully met. 

Working at KCB was enjoyable for Gladys because it provided her with an educative experience while deepening her interest in machine learning.

Gladys advises other AIMS students to be open-minded, self-teachable and curious enough to enrich their knowledge over what they learned in class.  

The Co-operative (Co-op) Education Program which leads to the AIMS Master’s in Mathematical Sciences is 18-months long and allows students to apply their scientific knowledge to real-world problems and to transition from academic studies to gainful employment. Since its inception, the fully-funded Co-op program has seen over 194 students successfully graduate from the program. 

Share article: