Kenyan, Moroccan win Cisco’s NetRiders competition

Nairobi: 5rd October 2017 – Kenya’s Charles Mutua and Morocco’s Hamza Jebbour floored over 15,400 entrants globally to win the Cisco Networking Academy’s NetRiders competition. Effectively, the two will travel to Cisco headquarters in San Jose, for a Study Trip, in January 2018.


Africa entered 19 competitors in the third round of the competition.  Morocco’s Jebbour emerged top student, followed closely by Kenya’s Mutua.


Mutua is in his final year at the Kenyatta University where he is pursuing a Bachelor of Science’s Degree in Mathematics and Computer Science. He is also a Cisco Networking Academy student focusing on CCNA Routing and Switching and CCNA Security certifications. Kenyatta University is one of several African universities who’ve successfully integrated NetAcad courseware within their degree qualifications, to prepare their students for the 4th Industrial Revolution.


“My teachers at school always said I have an eye for solving problems in Mathematics and Physics and with the world today achieving scientific and technological advancements, this is a success story and I’ve always wanted to be part of such a success. Winning the competition has given me confidence that I can succeed in the field of Networking,” says Mutua on his NetRiders accolade.


Jebbour is a 23-year-old IT Technician from Tetouan, Morocco who trained with the OFPPT Maroc- Network Engineering specializing in Switching, Routing, Cloud, System Administration and Security. This is the 3rd consecutive year where the NetRiders competition was won by an OFPPT students. OFPPT has strategically partnered with Cisco to successfully integrate NetAcad courseware into vocational training across Morocco.


“The IT world is everything for me, every day I want to learn new technologies and new features. My goal is to master Networking and System Administration area,” says Jebbour who went on to become number one in the competition.


Cisco’s CSR flagship programme


Every year, Cisco opens up its resources for young students and professionals to enter the much acclaimed Cisco NetRiders competition. The competition is part of Cisco’s CSR flagship programme, the Networking Academy (NetAcad) – launched in 1998, a global Cisco programme that offers IT skills and career building courses for learning institutions and individuals.


To date, over 9500 NetAcademies have been created in more than 170 countries, with more than six million students trained.


The top 5 winners will receive a choice between a CCNA Routing & Switching or CCNA Security certification voucher. Those who ranked 6th – 19th will receive a Certificate of Achievement. The top 25 receive a Certification in CCENT and IT Essentials, which gives them a foot into the door of their chosen careers.


“There is nothing more satisfying as reflecting on the impact we have made in the past twenty years of the Cisco Networking Academy. The NetRiders competition is only but one of these impact stories where Hamza, Charles and other winners and participants will now be able to empower their country’s digital transformation efforts and will also be able to realize their own dreams,” says Alfie Hamid, Regional CSR Manager for Africa at Cisco.


Cisco has spent over US$177 million supporting Africa’s ICT education and Tech socio-economic impact sectors by partnering with Government, industry partners, educational institutions and NGOs.