Five Gumption companies are taking part in the Summer School: SAP specialist TheValueChain, test expert Brightest, digital powerhouse Oddball, infrastructure specialist Rank 1 and Geosparc, expert provider of geospatial software solutions. They present students with specific corporate questions. Second and third-year students of Applied Informatics, Multimedia & Creative Technologies, Graduates Programming, System and Network Management and IoT choose an innovative challenge to work on.
Applied Informatics training manager Steve Weemaels: ‘The Summer School proved so popular last year that we’ve made it a subject for third-year students. We don’t assess it in the traditional way with credits. As an educational department, we’re moving away from the classic school system. Primarily, we want to help students become the best version of themselves. These sorts of initiatives help us to put that philosophy into practice.’
Five innovative tracks
‘The Summer School centres on innovation,’ says Iris Snoeck, talent xcelerator at Gumption. ‘Artificial Intelligence is the recurring theme in the tracks we are offering the students. It’s something our companies make full use of. It’s the technology of the future.’
Steve Weemaels: “We aim to introduce students to the corporate world, with interesting cases and new forms of technology. The goal is to help them look around for themselves, test ideas and refine interests. In short, they have to immerse themselves and commit themselves fully, something which they’ll also have to do later in their career.’
Here is what is on the programme:
- TheValueChain focusses on robot process automation (RPA) and automating repetitive tasks with SAP. Using SAP iRPA, the students will programme an automated task through machine learning and conversational AI.
- Brightest covers automated testing and self-healing testing with AI. Students will automate a test using a standard tool and then compare the results with test automation via a self-healing tool.
- Rank 1 offers a session on digital and cloud transformation. Students will build a business solution using a wireless network.
- Oddball presents a track on outstanding user experience and developing innovative features with augmented reality, gamification and 3D.
- Geosparc zooms in on implementing data for parking solutions. Students will have to think about what software components, sensors and processes are needed to create parking areas for cars, electric cars and e-bikes.
The Summer School innovation week takes place in the week beginning 20 September.
Steve Weemaels: ‘We were fortunate in that the Summer School last year fell in between two lockdowns and we could organise the event live in a safe manner. That did the students a lot of good and you could see the sparkle in their eyes. They were yearning for live contact and itching to meet new people and gain new experiences. That’s still the case now.’
During the kick-off event, managing partner Liene De Bie will talk about the philosophy and the Gumption companies. The week ends with a networking event on Friday, an informal meeting of the students and managers. Iris Snoeck: ‘Founder Bart Embrechts of Gumption is among those attending the event. This was a very popular part of the programme of the previous Summer School edition; so, well worth repeating.’
Steve Weemaels: ‘Gumption companies are dynamic and have an open mentality to match that of our students. Gumption is anything but a tailored company. The atmosphere isn’t formal and stiff, and students appreciate that. Our collaboration doesn’t stop after the Summer School. This year, experts from The Value Chain are also giving some training in Business IT Development. It’s a win-win for everyone.’
Iris Snoeck: ‘It’s nice to see that a few alumni of the first edition have since joined Gumption companies. We have come full circle.’
This year, the Summer School coincides with the Boot Camp which is organised by the digital campus in Anderlecht to welcome students back to the campus. Gumption is participating with a presentation. Recruiter Liesbeth Vander Elst will tell the students how to make their LinkedIn profile stand out through personal branding.
Steve Weemaels: ‘We expect over 700 students for the event. The Summer School network moment on Friday links in with the Boot Camp festivities and our Freaky Friday gaming event to be precise. It will be one big party.’
As university lectures have not yet resumed, the Summer School can make use of the whole campus to ensure that the coronavirus safety measures are met. The official government guidelines will be strictly adhered to.