Eight Nigerian students from the At’tarbiyyah STEM School, Abuja, participated in the third edition of the Korea Culture Center Nigeria (KCCN), and Korea Africa Foundation (KAF), Youth Camp held October 16 to 20, 2023.
An annual event, established in 2021, the camp aims not just to acquaint students with the Korean business model and culture, but to entrench notions and desire for entrepreneurism and technological innovation at an early age.
The five-day youth camp saw the students (four boys and four girls) and their supervisors tour the center, as well as Korean tech, automobile and culture organizations in Lagos like Samsung, LG, Kia, X-Pression, Jang-gu Studio and the Nike Gallery.
The students visited the culture center, learning the history of Korea’s culture, traditional clothing, food and musical instruments – taking time out to learn to play traditional Korean drum, Jang-gu, demonstrated by Jang-gu expert Mr Isioma Williams in Lagos; in addition to a visit to the Nike Arts Gallery, in Lagos which houses over 25,000 paintings.
Students also witnessed the processes in assembling a vehicle at Kia Motors – from the auto parts, to their assemblage and physical test drive; while also offered an insight into LG’s corporate ideologies and the recent innovations – like the energy-saving, knock-twice LG Instaview Door-in-Door refrigerator, ArtCool AC, and LG Thin-Q app, all of which are remotely controlled from a considerable distance.
The students were further taken on a tour of the X-Pression manufacturing facility; whilst a tour of the Samsung facility in Abuja introduced them to the brand’s latest mobile and personal pcs line-up, as the Samsung Flip 5, Fold 5, and Samsung S9 Tablet, which with the company’s gifting the students Samsung Fit2 smart watch.
Speaking of their experience, the students highlighted the educative nature of the camp, the importance of innovation and technology in today’s world, and the need to foster local businesses in the automobile and culture industries.
“Seeing what these companies have done with technology and how far it has come really inspires me to believe I can do more in the future,” said Kasim I Yakubu.
“I had no idea X-Pression was a South Korean company. I wonder why technology can’t be introduced into some of the processes at the factory, not to displace the workers but to make their work easier,” suggested Aisha M Sa’id.
Describing the camp as beneficial to students, particularly in a world swerving towards technology and auto-mechanics, Kia Operations Manager, Lagos, Oluwatomiwa Okunola said it is a fundamental step to developing Nigeria’s automobile industry.
“A student asked why all these auto parts are imported, and I responded that the automobile sector of the Nigerian economy isn’t developed. Let’s develop it! We aren’t developing it or training ourselves because most people see mechanical work as tedious, but honestly it is exciting. I sincerely hope these students will call me with an interest in mechanics, and I will gladly surrender my time.”
For the Director at At’tarbiyyah STEM School, Hajiya Amina A Abubakar, commended KCCN and KAF for the hosting the youth camp. She is also optimistic that the relationship established between the school and the Korean institutions will extend beyond the camp to other projects.
“I would love for our students to have an opportunity to work with LG or Kia on innovative projects they come up with that fits both companies’ business models and ideology.”