The winners have been announced for the 2021 national Programming Olympiad, a challenge for high school learners who can use a computer programming language. The Olympiad seeks to grow coding skills among young South Africans.

The South African Computer Olympiad, an initiative of the Institute of Information Technology Professionals South Africa (IITPSA), presented the 2021 Programming Olympiad in partnership with Standard Bank.

Speaking during a virtual award ceremony, Admire Gwanzura, President of the IITPSA, noted: “We believe participation in these Olympiads helps young people learn the basic principles of programming and applications, and exposes them to the opportunities open to them through the world of ICT. By learning the language of the future, participants are already taking the first steps towards exciting, fulfilling careers in STEM and ICT.”

The Olympiad saw over 1,200 learners participating in two rounds, with 19 finalists from around the country taking part in the finals of the challenge in Cape Town recently.

In the First Round, the participants have to solve a number of problems using the language of their choice, however for the Second Round and Final Round, the languages are more restricted.

The gold medal and Standard Bank Trophy were awarded to Minkyum Kim, a Grade 10 pupil at Reddam House Durbanville.

Silver medals were awarded to Jaedon Naidu, Grade 12 at Eden College Durban; and Ruan Schoeman, Grade 9 at Homeschool Midrand.

Bronze medals went to Liam Watson, Grade 12 at Somerset College; Emmanuel Rassou, Grade 11 at South African College High School; and Jacques Amsel, Grade 11 at Deutsche Internationale Schule Kapstadt.

The following achievers received honourable mentions:

Kenna Geleta, Grade 11 at Ferdinand Postma High School; Benjamin Kleyn, Grade 11 at Parel Vallei High School; Kerry Porrill, Grade 12 at Cannons Creek Independent High School; Louis van der Walt, Grade 11 at Hoërskool Waterkloof

Selected participants will be entered into the International Olympiad in Informatics. Kelvin Nhlapo, head of business development at IITPSA, added that each finalist also received a free student membership of the IITPSA. He said: “This is how IITPSA encourages young people to stay up to date with the ICT sector and skills development in the sector. We hope that by becoming IITPSA members, these young people will benefit from engaging with the Institute and its activities on their continued journey to becoming future professionals and ambassadors for the sector in South Africa.”

To learn more about the Olympiads and find out how schools and students can participate in the 2022 Computing Olympiads, visit Olympiads & Competitions – IITPSA or email: