From a center of excellence in IT – to a project of national importance! On the fourth anniversary of its activity, the TEKWILL project is committed to bringing information technology closer to people from all regions of Moldova and kicks off “[r] evolution that reaches the whole country.” In the 4 years of activity, the TEKWILL project launched and implemented programs for the development of excellence in ICT, contributed to the development of the workforce, supported entrepreneurship, and came up with know-how to create an ecosystem favourable to tech startups. Thus, for 4 years, funds of over $ 13 million were attracted, over 865 thousand hours of training were carried out, over 400 thousand people benefited from its programs and those supported together with other partners, and over 43% of them were girls and women. The TEKWILL project, founded in 2017, is implemented by the National Association of ICT Companies with the financial support of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and Sweden.
Anna Lyberg, Ambassador of Sweden to Moldova: “A few years ago, together with USAID Moldova, Sweden joined forces to create and develop a visionary initiative in Moldova – TEKWILL! And what a journey it was! TEKWILL was born from a partnership between the private sector and academia, where donors’ strategic priorities were incorporated. Thanks to TEKWILL we have stronger and substantial human resources in IT. We have an initiative that inspires children and young people to get involved in this field, encouraging them to stay in the country to work here, as well as support entrepreneurship and startups. We are glad to see that during these 4 years, around 78 thousand people have benefited from the activities carried out by TEKWILL and we are delighted that half of them are girls and women. Respectively, it is an initiative that helps them improve their lives and living conditions. I am also pleased to see TEKWILL expand its activities and projects in the regions by promoting digitalisation, which is worth celebrating today.”
Scott Hocklander, director of the USAID mission in Moldova: “It is remarkable and impressive for me to see this major movement and how far we have managed to move forward in such a short period of time. It is in this complicated period that it is very important to observe the things that can be considered small victories, some very positive opportunities, which is, in fact, TEKWILL for us. One of USAID’s main objectives in the Republic of Moldova is to support existing partnerships between businesspeople, academia, and the Government, in order to educate a workforce that will remain in the country. TEKWILL is a “technological awakening” of the Republic of Moldova. It is very clear that, in these 4 years, all the promises and achievements of the TEKWILL project have proved to be successful.”
Ana Chirița, director of the TEKWILL project: “4 years ago, we laid the foundations of the biggest tech dream we admire today in reality – TEKWILL. After many experiences, we can proudly say that one in 10 people in Chisinau has crossed our threshold and taken part in our initiatives, and one in 7 IT companies is our partner or has benefited from our programs. More. We have expanded our network of partners, we have developed fundamental TEKWILL projects in Bălți, Cahul and Comrat, we have welcomed dozens of students, teachers, specialists, and freelancers in “our home” dedicated to the IT sector. This year we will expand even more – we will connect 300 schools to TEKWILL programs, we will support and train hundreds of entrepreneurs, we will continue to lead the digital revolution. All my deep gratitude goes to those who believed in us – USAID, Sweden, the Government of Moldova, TUM, regional partners, ATIC and to each of our beneficiaries, who trust what we do.”
TEKWILL projects implemented in several regions of the country
In 2020, the projects developed by TEKWILL have expanded beyond the capital, to encourage the development of the ICT sector at national level. In the coming years, in the key regions of the Republic of Moldova will be created more centers of excellence in IT, educational programs will be developed for the training of the workforce in the field, the professions of the future will be brought closer to 95% of schools, SMEs- will be helped to acquire more digital skills, entrepreneurs will be supported on their way to success and much more. An important step taken by TEKWILL is the expansion in the southern region of the country.
Irina Vlah, the Bashkan of Gagauzia: “I am sure that a project can advance and generate results only if the people involved in its realization are constructive, inspired and talented people, they are people looking for solutions, people whose difficulties challenge them even more to find new ways to progress. I watched this project and I liked how you progressed, and I will admit that for a long time I have been looking for solutions to attract the experience, talent, and energy of TEKWILL in Gagauzia. We were inspired by the TEKWILL project and I am happy that we recently signed the Memorandum of Understanding for the implementation of the project in the Autonomy of Gagauzia by creating a “Tekwill”-type center in Comrat. Our goal is to create in Comrat a platform that will become an amplifier of talent, youth energy, with opportunities to learn programming and create solutions and technical progress. I congratulate you on the occasion of the anniversary and I wish you to remain the locomotive of the development of this beautiful project and the development of the IT sector in Moldova. Happy birthday, TEKWILL!”
TEKWILL projects are on the rise in the north of the country, where since last year, development opportunities have been expanded to create the premises for connecting talent and potential of human capital with the possibilities offered by local IT companies.
Ion Bodrug, president of ACETI Bălți: “I want to congratulate the TEKWILL team for the successful results achieved so far. Until today, they were the ones who laid the solid foundations of the IT development methodology at national level. And now it is time to expand its activity and initiatives in all regions of the country. ACETI collaborates productively with the TEKWILL team, a prodigious partnership, that is why we are waiting for you in the north of the country with great programs that students, pupils and all those who want to develop their IT skills are eager to learn. Happy birthday, TEKWILL!”
Natalia Gașițoi, Rector of the “Alecu Russo” State University in Bălți: “We have been following the development of the TEKWILL project since its launch and we are happy to see so many partnerships connecting Moldovan industries and companies to the digital world. We bring words of gratitude and good wishes to the TEKWILL team and at the same time I would like to thank for the initiative and support offered in the construction of the ICT Center of Excellence in Balti, where I hope to see each other and collaborate through those projects that lead to technological transformation in regions.”
With the support of USAID and Sweden, Tekwill was created in 2017 as the Center of Excellence of the ICT sector in Moldova, with the main goal of aligning the field with the requirements of the 21st century. Aiming to contribute to increasing the competitiveness of the IT industry and other strategic sectors of the economy, the center has expanded its current fields of activity, becoming in 2019 a complex project at national level. The basic objective of the TEKWILL Project, as a platform dedicated to the progress of the IT sector, is to ensure a major impact on the economic development of the country by improving the entrepreneurial and educational capacities of society members, but also the research and development potential of higher education, in line with the demand in the IT market.
TEKWILL – “[r]evolution reaches the whole country”!