By Brian Martin
At Techknowledgy2 Academy, it is all about learning the tools of the trade in the coding industry. But who is there to help run it? That would be Donnavan Kirk, one of the founders and current president of the company.
Kirk is a former NCAA basketball player who made a name for himself playing for the University of Miami as well as playing internationally. He also played for DePaul University as an undergraduate student and as a graduate student at UM.
“Playing basketball at the University of Miami was a tremendous experience [filled with potential for me to grow],” said Kirk. “I was getting my master’s in education there, specifically for community social change. And after that, I was able to [play internationally in countries like] Cypress, then I played in Greece [and then Japan] for two years.”
During his time in Japan, Kirk gained an interest in coding and developing apps. That interest eventually led him to return to Florida to pursue his interest in coding.
“So basically, when I was playing in Japan [I only focused on basketball, then] my business partner [explained to me about the] coding school movement,” said Kirk. “At first, I was like, ‘man I don’t know if I really like to get involved in something like that’ and I was playing ball and then I start learning more about it and [started to get more interested in it because of how it can transform one’s career.]”
Before deciding to return to Florida, Kirk developed his own app in the Apple app store as a way to put what he had been learning about creating apps into practice.
“That’s when I first got into technology, my first year of playing in Japan, I was like ‘man I want to build something that connected people,’” said Kirk. “I got further into it and I started building it and I released an app called ‘Tocolif.’ Got it in the app store, got it approved. But then after that, I was like ‘man I want to make it better’ and so I never publicly did a release for it [but I did update it and it currently is on the app store but it does not work at the moment].”
The app helped further Kirk’s desire to explore the coding field. After his time in Japan ended, he came to Boca Raton to start Techknowledgy2 Academy.
At Techknowledgy2 Academy, the courses are divided based on what students want to learn. They have courses in web development, Android development, IOS development and introductory courses to programming. Class times vary depending on the programs selected.
In addition to Techknowledgy2 Academy, Kirk also owns the Kirk Youth Basketball Academy and WUW Technologies, Inc., the latter of which Kirk used to launch his first app. Kirk started the Youth Basketball Academy, not only to help children with their basketball skills, but also to help them develop other skills in areas such as robotics.
“What I would say [to those interested in coding], whatever you are doing right now, learning coding is going to help your résumé… no matter what because it teaches you how to, not only be creative, but to be intelligent at the same time,” said Kirk.
Techknowledgy2 Academy is located at 1515 N Federal Highway in Boca Raton.