A 12-year-old student of Lagooz College, Iyana Ipaja Lagos, Chetachi Best Mbalu, and 15-year-old Uchenna Rita Ohiaeri of Queensland Academy, Okota, Lagos emerged winners in the junior and senior categories respectively of the 2021 Children’s Day Essay Competition.
Their entries were outstanding from among over 2000 others received from about 600 privately-owned and public secondary schools across Nigeria.
SystemSpecs‘ annual Children’s Day Essay Competition is an opportunity for Nigerian children between 9 to 16 to share technology-led ideas capable of transforming specific aspects of the country as well arouse their interest in technology for national development.
The 2021 Children’s Day Essay Competition is the second in the series and is part of SystemSpecs’ aim to drive capacity development towards the technological advancement of Nigeria.
The first and second runners-up were Justin Chukwuemeka Nwachukwu, aged 12, from Babington Macaulay Junior Seminary, Ikorodu, Lagos, and Praise Idaiye, aged 10, from Starlite College, Ibadan, Oyo State in the junior category.
While Wilfred Okoawo, 15, from New Fountain Secondary School, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos State, and 16-year-old Nwachinemere Uzochukwu Mbaka from Maryland Comprehensive Secondary School, Maryland, Lagos emerged first and second runners-up respectively in the senior category.
Leading other young Nigerians across the country as front liners in advanced, solution-based thinking, the brilliant youngsters who emerged first in each category will each receive a high capacity laptop, a topnotch headphone, monthly 10 gigabyte data for one year, a branded travel suite case, trendy hoodie, thermal flask, and a school bag.
The first runners-up will receive a high capacity laptop, a topnotch headphone, monthly 5 gigabyte data for one year, a trendy hoodie, a thermal flask, and a school bag.
Meanwhile, New Fountain Secondary School, Amuwo Odofin, Lagos, emerged winner of the School’s award in the senior category as it had the highest points among the top 10 participants and will get 15 high-capacity laptop computers.
Likewise, the school award of 10 high-capacity laptop computers for the junior category goes to Lagooz School Lagos which also produced the category winner with the highest points.
Themed “Building a more Secure Nigeria using Technology”, the competition received dazzling thoughts written in a maximum of 1000 and 1500 words respectively for the junior and senior categories respectively of how Nigeria can explore technology to tackle the menace of insecurity confronting her.
“At SystemSpecs, we are firm believers in the Nigeria project and strongly advocate that young Nigerians be given a chance to make input into issues of strategic national importance. Our annual essay competition helps us to feel the pulse of the younger generation while creating the consciousness that they have a role to play in national progress,” said Deremi Atanda, SystemSpecs’ Executive Director in charge of corporate strategy.
Atanda also acknowledged the support received from leading bodies within Nigeria’s education sector for the 2021 competition, most notably the National Association of Proprietors of Private Schools (NAPPS).
The judging process that produced the winners was thorough, as all entries were stripped of the identities of the entrant and sent round to judges for multiple assessments, after which top entries were shortlisted and independently reviewed by the panel of judges.
Speaking on behalf of the judges, Adedoyin Jaiyesimi, Chief Communications Consultant at The Comms Avenue, noted that the quality of the essays reflected the quality of Nigeria’s current educational system.
“While a majority of the entries reflected good thinking and impressive research, a number also suggested that participants did not pay enough attention to instructions and also lacked experienced guidance.
“Nonetheless, on behalf of other distinguished members of the panel of judges this year, I commend everyone who sent in an entry expressing their thoughts on the Nigerian project, especially how technology could be leveraged to return the country to a fully secure and peaceful state”, he said.
Jaiyesimi added that the judges, who themselves are influencers of national policies, would work with SystemSpecs to ensure that the bright ideas expressed in the essays are curated for implementation exploring different partnership models.