HP has committed to reach 100,000 learners across Africa over the next three years through the HP Foundation’s HP LIFE program, and kicked off the commitment by opening a new tech-enabled HP LIFE Center in South Africa.
HP’s pledge supports the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 4 and furthers the company’s goals to enable better learning outcomes for 100 million people by 2025 and to enroll a million HP LIFE users between 2016 and 2025, as outlined in the HP 2017 Sustainable Impact Report.
By 2030, Africa will be home to 32% of the population under the age of 30, and the largest working age population by 2035. Yet, today’s youth unemployment in Africa is up to 3x higher than adult unemployment. HP LIFE offers free, online learning for users to gain the skills to start and grow their own business or improve their employment opportunities. Building on the success of this global program, HP is working with partners to open technology-enabled HP LIFE innovation centers to further support entrepreneurship and workforce development across the continent.
“We believe that education is a human right, that technology in the classroom is a critical component for a 21st century education, and that in today’s economy our learning is never done,” said Nate Hurst, Chief Sustainability and Social Impact Officer, HP. “Africa is experiencing rapid urbanization and digitization—and it’s essential that people have access to learn skills for the work of tomorrow. This new HP LIFE Center provides a launchpad for innovation and opportunity across the continent.”
Last year HP announced a commitment to enabling better learning outcomes for 100 million people by 2025. The commitment to education is a part of HP’s broader Sustainable Impact strategy – a strategy to use the scope, scale and expertise of HP to drive positive, lasting change for the planet, its people and the communities where we live, work and do business.
“Sustainable Impact is fundamental to our reinvention and core to achieving our vision – to create technology that makes life better for everyone, everywhere,” said Hurst.
In collaboration with institutions such as the Ekurhuleni West TVET College in Katlehong and its Centre of Entrepreneurship Rapid Incubator, HP opened the HP LIFE Center in South Africa on November 30, a technology-enabled hub to facilitate learning, collaboration and entrepreneurship in a physical, face-to-face setting.
Built on the belief that entrepreneurs are the backbone of the global economy, HP LIFE offers 30 free, online courses focused on business and IT skills – from business planning and marketing, to raising capital and design thinking. To date, HP LIFE has reached 744,000 learners in 200 countries and territories. All users need is a computer and Internet connection to access HP LIFE, and the new, physical center in South Africa will create a more formal educational environment. HP LIFE has an enrollment goal of 1 million users between 2016 and 2025.
At the World Economic Forum’s 48th Annual Meeting in January, Youth for Technology Foundation (YTF) and HP Foundation announced a new 3D printing course to be delivered through the HP LIFE platform. 3D printing will fundamentally change the manufacturing industry. $4 to 6 trillion (USD) of the global economy will be disrupted in the next five to 10 years, shifting economic value and jobs across the globe. This new course is helping individuals to learn how to use 3D printing and create entrepreneurial opportunities.