UCA Graduate Wins Digital Startup Contest
Bagymdat Atabaeva, a graduate of both the University of Central Asia’s School of Arts and Sciences (SAS) and School of Professional and Continuing Education (SPCE) won the Sanarip Insan (Digital Person) contest held in November 2023. As the winner, she received a grant of 400 thousand Kyrgyz soms (approx. US$ 4,500). The purpose of the contest was to empower young citizens, especially girls, to use advanced digital knowledge and skills to create business projects with a limited budget.
Bagymdat Atabaeva receives the “Sanarip Insan” prize. Photo: Economist.Kg
Born and raised in Naryn, Atabaeva’s journey with UCA started with SPCE in Naryn. While a student, she joined the Academic Achievement Program and later enrolled in the UCA’s SAS as a Communications and Media major, becoming one of the inaugural graduates in 2021.
Atabaeva developed Salym.ai, a smart tax assistant which aims to ease the process of tax payment for the citizens using AI technologies. “As a young professional who had to learn about taxes myself and faced challenges along the way, I always wanted to ease the process of tax submission. While the information online is not always clear and financial consultant services can be costly, we at Salym.ai aim to make information on tax available for everyone” she notes. Atabaeva believes that educating citizens on submitting tax reports, applying for tax refunds, and preventing errors in the calculations can benefit the whole community.
Reflecting on the contest and her achievement, Atabaeva expresses her gratitude to UCA for providing her with skills necessary for succeeding in such competitions and startup: “SPCE was an environment where students' ideas were heard, supported, and taught to be implemented. Courses such as Critical Thinking and daily discussions in English classes taught us to discuss social issues, and come up with potential solutions.”.
During her time at UCA, Atabaeva participated in a variety of extracurricular activities that helped her develop the skills and expertise necessary for creating and implementing innovative projects that will support the development of the region.
Bagymdat Atabaeva participating in the Sanarip Insan contest. Photo: Economist.Kg