Google Africa Scholarship Phase 1

Introduction

So I have been selected for Phase 1 (Mobile Web Specialist) of the Google Africa Scholarship which is amazing and I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity. For those of you unfamiliar with what I am talking about I will explain it here. Google has partnered with Andela and Pluralsight to provide a Scholarship for 30,000 learners in Africa. In the start 120,000 learners were selected to start. We went through a preselect phase where we had to consume a certain amount of content and score at a certain level in the Pluralsight HTML, CSS and JavaScript Skill IQ tests to advance to the next phase.

I have also been selected as an LCA (Learning Community Ambassador) and that entails assisting and mentoring ALC 4.0 learners, helping them with technical questions about their courses and finding new ways of encouraging active participation and completion of their courses.

What now?

With the selection of the next phase concluded, we have been provided with a TON of new content that we can consume. One channel named Mobile Web Specialist Phase 1 Main Track has 30 hours of content and the second channel Mobile Web Specialist Phase 1 Deep Dive has over 170 hours of content!

I have been very interested in learning about Web Components for the last few months but I haven't had the time to jump into it yet. My greatest surprise was to see that provided a course on Web Components in one of the channels so I can finally dive into learning all about it. I have also had the time to look into Polymer as well as Stencil.js.

My second favorite course that is included is Node.js. Pluralsight provides access to the entire Node.js Path which consists of almost 33 hours of content. I have started using Node.js at work so a better understanding of it is going to help me a lot.

Moving Forward

The past few weeks have been quite hectic trying to watch the content on Pluralsight, managing my 8 - 5 work life and keeping up with all the questions in the Andela Web Slack. I am finding ways of balancing my own studies better whilst being able to assist learners and to answer their questions. I feel that if I do not find some way of balancing all of this I might burn out in a couple of months and it is still a very long journey for all of us to get through.

I also remembered a few days ago that Slackbot can take over a lot of the work of answering recurring questions so I have programmed it with a bunch of keywords and answers. This has been a massive improvement as the bot is catching a lot of the recurring questions and it allows me to provide links or answers to the learners by using a few keywords to trigger Slackbot.

In the next few weeks we will be divided into Learner Groups and I will be assigned a number of students to mentor. I have already started a list of different challenges that I will provide to them to test their knowledge and practical skill to find out where they need to focus on studying to be able to pass the Google Exam that we may receive at the end of the Scholarship.

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