774 Scientists Presidential Award: Commissioner Kogi promises fair opportunity for every school

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Kogi Government on Thursday pledged to create access for every student scientist and technologist to participate in the “774 Young Nigerian Scientists Presidential Award (YONSPA) 2018” at the state level.

The state’s Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Mrs Rosemary Osikoya, gave the assurance in Lokoja at the award presentation to Jude Egbunu.

Egbunu, 17, a student of Saint Peter’s Science College, Idah, emerged third position in Mathematics at the last edition of YONSPA held on Feb. 18 at the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, Abuja.

Osikoya said that sometimes a child who becomes best student does not emerge through a competitive process, but this avenue provides schools the opportunity to compete among themselves.

“We want to scale up the process so as to allow all schools at secondary level to have the opportunity to paticipate in the competition.

“We are sensitising all secondary schools in Kogi not to miss out in the competition for the presidential award as the overall winner will get scholarship up to PhD level.”

She said that the grand finale of the competition would take place on Nov. 10.

The commissioner added that there would also be Governor’s Award for young and talented scientists and technicians at the post-basic education level, particularly secondary school.

Mr Matthew Omiachi, the Desk Officer, Science and Quiz Competition of the ministry, said, “YONSPA is an initiative of the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology, aimed at effectively encouraging and developing the interest of Nigerian youths in Science, Technology & Innovation (STI)”.

He added that the presidential award was designed to produce a pool of dedicated scientists and technologists, with the capacity to compete internationally, and attract young Nigerians to develop interest in science and technology.

The Principal of Saint Peter’s College, Mr Akpa Phillip, thanked the commissioner for the reception given to the team from the school, saying it would boost their morale to do more.

He, however, urged the state Government to have a reward system in terms of scholarship for students who have excelled in academics and other aspects.

In a remark, Egbunu, thanked the commissioner for the warm reception, saying it would motivate him and other students to study hard and put in more efforts.

Egbunu also commended the efforts of the state government toward improving science and technical education, saying that it would encourage students to take career in science and technology.

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