Repressing social and cultural constructs always begin with an undeniable streak of excellence. Popular opinion has it that the Tech Scene is dominated by the male gender. This could be true, however, it is not an excuse or a reason to doubt the capabilities of women in the ecosystem. They are just as qualified as the men and they should be celebrated equally.
Clarisse Iribagiza was born January 28, 1988 to a loving family. She was raised by a teacher and an Entrepreneur who continually spurred her to be ambitious in life. Her parents frequently asked her what her ambitions were, and this practice grounded a form of internal expectation that has had her question all her decisions for its long-term value.
This show of focus when aided by a thriving environment for growth and learning had her developing an in-depth interest in Technology at such a young age. She got into the University of Rwanda’s College of Science and Technology during which she also attended an incubation program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). At MIT, Clarisse understood the balance between the theory and practical aspects of IT and upon returning to school, she founded HeHe Limited. She was 22.
HeHe Limited is a solutionist initiative that assists business optimize their processes and save resources. Clarisse’s approach to this idea involved thorough evaluation, planning and drafting well suited strategies to help companies. However, this was not an easy process, it took different trials, experiments and effort before they finally got a hang of the job.
Since then, they have worked with and built multi-functional IT programs for over 100 small to medium sized businesses. Clarissa’s innovations do not end at production level, her ideas have spilled into helping shape society and the new generation. In 2011, HeHe Labs developed a software that allowed young girls ask questions on life challenges and receive answers immediately on their mobile phones.
That is not all, she also decided to take on a mentorship role and together with fellow ICT entrepreneurs, they formed The iHills, a startup network in Rwanda that not only provides mentorship but also provides access to finance and the gateway to a favourable market. Never can it be said that Clarissa has not taken the steps to give back to the society.
As usual, our Techpreneur piece would not be complete without mentioning her accolades and decorations. Clarisse has won a number of awards and has made a handful of top lists. She was named as one of the 20 movers and shakers of Africa at the African CEO summit, nominated as one of the most promising entrepreneurs under 30 in 2015, and she was also awarded a Celebrating Young Rwandan Achievers (CYRWA) award by the first lady, Jeanette Kagame on her efforts on the state of welfare amongst the people of the country out of many others.
It is also worth knowing that she won Inspire Africa season One, beating 24 young entrepreneurs for the coveted prize. She walked away with $50,000.
Focus, determination and an eye for evaluation are only a few of the delectable traits that separates an entrepreneur from the average person. The ability to set the sight on that which has not appeared yet, to push tirelessly towards a dream and the zeal to push back when the pressure mounts. This is where it all matters and Clarisse has shown true qualities in the tests she has faced. She is TechGistAfrica’s Entrepreneur of the week.
Get real time update about this post categories directly on your device, subscribe now.