The start-up Whaller, a subsidiary of Bolloré, has just launched the virtual campus of the Félix Houphouët Boigny University, in Côte d’Ivoire. This platform, intended to strengthen the link between students and teachers, aims to become a transnational university network.
The Félix Houphouët Boigny University (UFHB) in Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire, now has its own virtual campus. Last week, the start-up Whaller, a subsidiary of the French group Bolloré, launched an interactive platform offering students spaces for discussion and sharing of information, as well as a set of digital tools relating to university life ( directory, university agenda, course schedule, media library).
Accessible free of charge via a computer or smartphone, the UFHB digital campus is meant to be an “extension of teaching spaces”, explains Thomas Fauré, Whaller’s managing director, interviewed by Jeune Afrique.
“Each training unit has a dedicated digital space”, allowing students “to have privileged contact with teachers”.
In the coming months, massive online courses (MOOCs) should also appear on the platform. “They will be supplied by the FHB university itself but also by partner universities or schools, especially abroad,” underlines Thomas Fauré, whose ambition is to create a vast interactive university network.
Since its launch at UFBH, nearly a thousand students have already registered on the platform offered by Whaller, out of the 20,000 students officially listed by the university (in reality, specifies Thomas Fauré, there would be 40,000 50,000 students to follow a course).
If Whaller’s platform required “five years of development”, “we are now able to open networks of universities in a few days,” said its director general. We would like to convince all the universities in West Africa. ”
If the project is still in its infancy, it could soon see the light of day in other universities in French-speaking sub-Saharan Africa, notably Yaoundé 1 and Yaoundé 2 in Cameroon.
Founded in 2013, Whaller enables the creation of private social networks for large structures (companies, communities, associations or institutions). Since its launch, the platform says it has convinced 300 organizations and companies – including Autolib ’, the self-service vehicle service of the city of Paris – and registered 40,000 users.
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