How to stay
curious: Advice from a young IT-nominee

How to stay
curious: Advice from a young IT-nominee

A few words about what it’s like to be nominated for a digitalization prize at the age of 25.

Jessica Cheng-Fung is 25 years old. In a few days, she graduates with a bachelor’s degree in computer science. This month, her project on digitizing Kindergartens was part of an initiative nominated for Norway’s biggest IT-award, Digitaliseringsprisen.

How did the project start?

I’m part of the social committee for the student association, which is called BIOS, and we went to a company presentation at Netcompany. I got a good impression, so I applied for a job at Netcompany.

At the same time, I was about to start my bachelor project, and I decided to apply for a joint project with Netcompany.

What was the project about?

It was a project to help kindergartens. In Oslo municipality, we have several districts. In Old Oslo, there are many low-income families. Immigrants, crime, things like that. Often, you can trace the problem all the way down to kindergartens and the interaction between children and adults.

The existing observational tool is called CLASS. Certified observers go around Kindergartens and observe children and adults, and they write everything down on paper. Then they send everything over to a person with an Excel sheet who types everything in manually.

We wanted to digitise the observational tool so that nothing happens manually, except entering the data. And we made a dashboard solution with all the data collected from the observations.

The dashboard is now implemented in all the Kindergartens in Old Oslo, which is eight in total.

What has the project meant to you?

It has been a very meaningful project. Many other groups have a fictive task to solve. But we have worked with a lot of customers at Oslo municipality. We have been developing. We have talked with kindergarten managers and teachers. We have seen people. And they have told us what they want.

It’s not like “it’s just a bachelor project. It is done, and then we forget about it.” It is going to be continued. It is real. That means a lot.

Being nominated was very, very cool. It meant that the work had been seen and recognized. My advice to others: I think it's important to be curious and learn new things. Dare to ask people. And just keep going.
Jessica Cheng-Fung

Consultant and IT-nominee