IU Google Ambassadors Speak

IU Google Ambassador photo .jpg

A year has quickly flown by and the term of the first two Inoorero University Google Student Ambassadors draws to anear end.

Catherine Kiama a law student and James Losikany an ICT student have been active Googlers on campus since August 2011.

The Google Student Ambassador program often referred to as GSA, is open to a selected few universities annually. Last year for the first time ever Inoorero University (IU) qualified to be part of this international program. This means that every year from 2011, the GSA program will be open to a few IU students. To be a GSA, one needs to be in a campus that has been approved by Google. This means that Google has opened the application to the said campus. Lucky for IU, this seems to have been a small hurdle to jump as they adequately demonstrated to be embracing
technology in its full force.

The program is open to all students; regardless of what they are pursuing who have at least one full academic year left on campus. However the student must be able to exhibit prowess in the use of a variety of Google features and products and be passionate about technology.

Despite the fact that the GSA program is unpaid, it gives successful applicants an amazing opportunity to work closely with one of the most easily recognizable companies in the World-Google! Having the title of a Google Student Ambassador for a year doesn’t look bad on your resume either!

The Ambassadors job is to ensure that both students and staff on their campus are well conversant with various Google features. The IU mail is powered by Google. This made one of our major tasks so much easier as we were almost sure that a majority of the population at IU knew the basics of some Google features. However to avoid any assumptions, the two Google Ambassadors held a day’s training on the basic features of Gmail, Google Calendars, Baraza,Google Translate, G+ and Google Documents and intend to hold another training very soon forBlogs, Mapping and basics for freshmen and part-time students especially before they leave office.

The Ambassadors are also tasked with ensuring that their campuses are aware of new Google Features such as G+ and to raise awareness on Google internships, scholarships such as the Anita Borg which specifically targets young ladies, competitions such as the Google Photography competition and anything Googley!!

The benefits of being a GSA other that owning the hottest Google swag such as a smart phone given to all GSAs courtesy of Google among other interesting Google merchandise include the opportunity to intern at their offices. James is currently working on a project at the Google-Kenya offices and seems to be putting what he has been learning in class to practice. The GSAs are able to improve their leadership and communication skills which help enhance personal development.

Last year 15 GSAs were chosen from various campuses in Kenya. This included the University of Nairobi, Kenyatta University, JKUAT, Strathmore University, St. Paul University and IU. Out of the 15, only 3 were ladies. The Google Students Ambassadors in Kenya have formed a network where they update each other on the progress of their projects, challenges and successes and use it as a networking platform.

IU Google Ambassasor, Catherine Kiama encourages more students to apply for this exciting opportunity, especially ladies and maybe this year have 5 GSA’s at IU!

The application for the next IU GSA’s is open and application forms on the same can be found on the link http://www.google.com/intl/en/jobs/students/proscho/programs/emea/ambass...