By Prudence Minayo
Magdalene Chepkemoi is the founder and executive director of EldoHub. This is a technology center located in the heart of Eldoret town that supports tech startups, and trains women and youth on Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) among other things.
Growing up in the village, she saw a computer for the first time when she joined high school. The connection to the computer was instantaneous. In high school, she performed very well in the sciences and decided to do a science related course. Her parents were not keen on this as at the time it wasn’t common for women to take up science courses. This did not stop her from chasing her dream and also going back to her town to help others achieve their dreams as well.
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Since the launch of EldoHub in 2017, they have been able to work with over thirty tech startups. Before this, Magdalene Chepkemoi tried to establish two tech startups without success. Some of the reasons for the failure was lack of support, trust and even the dynamics of partnerships. By creating EldoHub and partnering with organizations, she wanted to help many realize their dreams.
She did Applied Computer Science at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa and pursued a Bachelor of Science Computer Science- Networking and Software Development at Kabarak University. She then went on to do a Master of Science in Mobile Telecommunication and Innovation at Strathmore University. In 2018, she was a Mandela Washington Fellow for Young African Leaders at Northwestern University- Kalogg School of Management.
In 2011, she worked as a software development intern at Social Development Networks.
From August 2012 to August 2013, she was a transmissions engineer- Networks Management System at Telcom Kenya.
In 2015, she co-founded Techstarlets Kenya where she serves as the Director of Operations.
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In September 2018, she became a board member at St Bhakita House of hope.
She founded EldoHub in 2016 and officially opened for business in 2017. This is a technology, innovation and entrepreneurship hub that provides support to women and youth through leveraging on technology. The center offers various services including incubation of startups, capacity building or trainings, providing working space, opportunity or seed funding and mentorship and coaching.
In December 2022, she replaced David Ogiga as the chairperson of Association of Countrywide Innovations Hubs (ACIH) for a period of two years. While taking over, she promised to create 50,000 jobs and build 8,000 tech startups in the country through capacity building, collaborations, networking, funding and linkages.
“The goal is to take ACIH to the next level by increasing its publicity and impacts both locally and regionally. To achieve this I will leverage existing partnerships and create new ones, onboarding new members from across the country, and create programs that supplement the efforts of ecosystem players in fostering innovation, technology and entrepreneurship while tapping and nurturing talent, creating job opportunities and opening up the market for Startup and (M)SMES to contribute to the national GDP,” she said.