In 2019, during her first year at the university, Oyinloye Ayomide embarked on a meandering path into the tech industry. Initially, as a freshman seeking extra income, she delved into the world of fashion and skin-care entrepreneurship.
Soon, it dawned on her that a critical element she needed for her small business was branding and customer engagement, particularly with prospective clients, through graphic designs.
“To make a ‘Happy New Month’ graphic, I need to pay someone“, she said. This prompted her to learn how to make graphic designs for her business, to have her profit not spent on designing and branding.
“I decided to start learning how to create the designs myself with Canva”, Oyinloye said.
Fortunately, she attends Winners Campus Fellowship, which regularly organizes the Upskill workshop that trains students on marketing and technological skills. In 2022, Oyinloye was one of the individuals who partook in the training, which helped her to navigate the world of Photoshop and other professional graphic design applications.
Following the Upskill workshop in February, the Academic Staff Union of Universities initiated an extensive strike, leaving students and numerous others feeling frustrated. The ASUU members embarked on an eight-month-long strike due to the federal government’s failure to meet their demands.
Unexpectedly, Oyinloye, known for her diligence and dynamic nature, embraced a friend’s suggestion to venture into UI/UX, aiming to enhance her skills and knowledge.
“My friend gave me a contact, who gave me a Google Drive to lessons and books to learn about Product design.”
According to Career Foundry, UX design focuses on creating a seamless and meaningful user experience by understanding user needs, conducting research, and designing intuitive interfaces. In contrast, UI design focuses on the visual, interactive elements of a product to create aesthetically pleasing interfaces.
Oyinloye, who is now a graduate of international relations at Federal University, Oye-Ekiti, is working as a graphic designer and UI/UX designer.
‘Invest in Girls’ Rights: Our Leadership, Our Well-being’ is the theme of this year’s girl child education, and it can only be realized when the female gender takes on critical roles and challenges stereotypes in their world.
Tech, they say, is the newest oil, but men predominantly dominate it. According to the Nigerian Bureau of Statistics, women constitute only 22 % of the total number of people in Engineering, Mathematics, Science, and Technology in the country.
To fully develop the sector, we require not only ‘tech bros’ but also ‘tech babes’ to explore this thriving digital economy. Oyinloye aspires to witness women rising to become leaders in digital technology.”
Another female UX/UI designer and dietician, Lily Chiamaka, said her love for the computer started during her childhood when she was very inquisitive and admired anyone typing on the computer.
But significantly, she said, her tech journey started in 2020 when she got a remote job. “Because of the flexibility the job provided, I really didn’t want to have anything to do with 9 – 5. I also started to create flyers to propagate my Podcast on health.”
Just like Oyinloye, in 2022, Chiamaka went for a more intensive training on UI/UX design during her compulsory National Youth Service Corps or NYSC.
“I really enjoy designing; it gives me this joy. It helps to express myself”, she said, beaming with smiles.
Working as a health practitioner and UI/UX designer has been challenging for Chiamaka but she draws strength from the joy the two professions give her.
“I aspire to be an inspiration.”, Chiamaka said, “I love the fact that other women are inspired to go into tech because they met me.”
She concluded by expressing her hope for the growing presence of women in various digital technology fields, from accessible roles to more technically demanding ones such as coding.