In our short Q&A, Zakariya Miah reflects on his Apps for Good experience, including how our course impacted his future studies and career aspirations.
How did you first get involved with Apps for Good?
I first got involved with Apps for Good in Year 9 when a team in my school won the Barclays sponsored Tech Prize! As I had worked as a helper to the group, I was selected to join the team to go into London and experience the amazing opportunity of visiting the 30th floor in the Barclays building in Canary Wharf. Afterwards, I was privileged enough to help out at the Apps for Good event in the Barbican Centre as a Fellow. This opportunity opened my eyes to a world of creativity and hard work and I wanted to make sure I was involved in the following year with my app idea!
Tell us about the projects you developed during your time as an Apps for Good student.
Along with a good friend, we created our app ‘RxCare’. Being from a tight-knit community and having several family members working in the healthcare profession, I quickly recognised that there weren’t many beds in the local hospital due to patients facing countless boundaries when choosing their optimal care home. My teammate and I wanted to build a creative solution to this problem. Our app offered 360-degree virtual tours of geographically filtered care homes, CQC ratings (Care Quality Commission), live availability and the next steps to register your interest. We presented our idea in my school’s internal Dragons Den style competition and were fortunate to win!
What did you enjoy most about the experience?
I most enjoyed the brainstorming process of the competition, including discovering a gap in the market and creating a new solution, conducting market research and interviewing local professionals. Thinking of a way to help and creating a functioning model of the application was also thoroughly enjoyable. Entering the Apps for Good Showcase [formerly Awards] with my app was an incredible experience as I enjoyed being a part of a creative network of forward thinkers and receiving countless support from the team (such as plan templates). I would have happily applied again next year given the option to!
Participating in Apps for Good enabled me to develop numerous skills: teamwork, communication and research were crucial in the creation of my project. ”
Zakariya Miah, Former Apps for Good Student
What opportunities do you believe Apps for Good has given you?
Participating in Apps for Good enabled me to develop numerous skills: teamwork, communication and research were crucial in the creation of my project. They have enabled me to achieve all I have to date, such as public speaking at local council conferences and being involved in start-ups.
How has Apps for Good impacted your future studies and career aspirations?
Apps for Good has helped me gain the confidence needed to pursue my dream career in Law. My experience highlighted and amplified skills I continue to use, such as persuasion, postulation and collaboration. Being involved in the creation of an app has also further improved my time management and organisational abilities, which have proven to be significant in allowing me to go to my first choice University. I was able to hone my analytical abilities and it was my first experience of working in a similar atmosphere, further strengthening my appreciation for the career.
What was your favourite Apps for Good moment?
One of my favourite moments from Apps for Good was undoubtedly helping at the event in the Barbican. Being a very sociable person, it was the perfect opportunity to network with brilliant minded individuals and discuss future solutions with people from all walks of life.
What's next for you?
After completing my A-Levels (not too long away) I hope to be attending University to study Law with Philosophy LLB. I hope to secure a training contract and a smooth transition into the world of work!
What advice would you give to someone thinking about taking part in an AfG course?
You won’t regret it! Letting your mind run free and inventing new ways to make a difference with tech are amazing experiences to have. Apps for Good enabled me to further learn more about technology and the ways it can be used ‘for good’. Originally not knowing much about Apps for Good, attending the events and being involved in such an inspirational community helped me as well as many others improve invaluable skills, useful in any career! Aside from the employability aspects, it's a lot of fun! Working with friends to find a way to make the world a better place is one of the best ways to learn.
Reflecting on my time during the project, one piece of advice I wish I paid more attention to is sticking to the timings. Ensuring social life and school work is balanced can be tricky during secondary school, so making sure I was sticking to my set times was crucial in the overall development. With good planning and time management, you’ll have lots of time before finishing to make sure your app is the best it can be!
Letting your mind run free and inventing new ways to make a difference with tech are amazing experiences to have. Apps for Good enabled me to further learn more about technology and the ways it can be used ‘for good’. ”
Zakariya Miah, Former Apps for Good Student