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Strathmore University IT Student Association club participate in Microsoft leap ladies’ hackathon program.

Strathmore University participants in the Leap Ladies Hackathon pose for a photo after being awarded new Samsung phones

Ayan Keynan, Shannon Mujera, Maria Kisenga, Virginia Wanyee, and Hellen Kokach, current members of the Strathmore University’s IT Student Association (SUITSA) club in Strathmore University, participated in a 5-day leap ladies’ hackathon during the month of June at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Nairobi. The hackathon’s theme was to present novel agribusiness Artificial Intelligence (AI) and IoT solutions that can benefit farmers.

Strathmore University was divided into two teams. Sheroes Farm Insurance and Mtazao. Sheroes Farm insurance is a web-based solution that implements AI to determine covers and premiums for farmers based on their expected produce. Mtazao, coined from the Kiswahili words mtandao (internet) and mazao (produce), connects farmers to clients enabling them to sell the product without necessarily taking it to a formal market space. A machine-learning formula was used to calculate the premium proposal that would be offered to the farmers based on such factors as the yield production, size of the farm and the cost of production. The solutions were deployed using the Microsoft Azure Machine Learning Studio.

Microsoft endeavors to close the gap that exists in the IT sector by training ‘women techpreneurs’ from non-traditional ICT backgrounds through the LEAP Hackathon programme. The programme helped to challenge and prepare the students to solve real-world problems using the skills they learn in class.

“The experience was great, we were a bit nervous but our confidence grew with time. We got to learn a lot during the competition including Data Analysis Expressions (DAX), which is a native formula and query language for Microsoft,” said Ayan Keynan, a 3rd-year student pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Informatics and Computer Science, who was part of the Sheroes farm insurance team.

The teams came in second and third during the hackathon and were awarded phones from Samsung. They would like to thank the University for its support in attending various events that enrich their academic life.

To be part of the Strathmore University’s IT Student Association (SUITSA) club one can contact Ayan Keynan the club’s Vice Chair on ayan.keynan@strathmore.edu. The club meets every Friday from 3 pm at the Management Science Building (MSB) room 7.


This article was written by Ayan Keynan

If you have a story, kindly email: communications@strathmore.edu