Science students from the 36 states and the FCT Abuja will have the opportunity to display their independent research projects and inventions, as they try to solve the challenges faced in their local communities at the 2014 National School Science Fair to be hosted by the Akwa Ibom State Government.
The event which is sponsored by Shell Petroleum Development Company (SPDC), Intel Corporation, and Interswitch will also create an avenue for Science teachers who accompany the students to the Fair to participate in a one-week Science Educator Academy, where they will learn about current trends in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), including project management and mentoring of young scientists.
Speaking at a press conference announcing the fair, Nedo Osayande, SPDC’s general manager, sustainable development and community relations, expressed the company’s joy at being a part of the success of the National Science Fair.
According to him, “We believe that, by encouraging the young ones to take interest in science subjects, we will be laying a solid foundation for the technological development of Nigeria.
“This has also informed the different educational programmes that SPDC and other Shell companies in Nigeria are implementing in the Niger Delta and throughout the country.”
Olubunmi Ekundare, country manager, Intel Nigeria, while explaining the mechanics of the competition stated, “We encourage interested students to submit their original research work. The best six (6) projects will qualify to feature at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) which will holds in Los Angeles from May 11-16 2014. Over 4 million dollars in prizes and scholarships will be awarded to winners.”
Also speaking at the conference, Mitchell Elegbe, group managing director, Interswitch Transnational, said that the fair is an excellent opportunity for young Nigerians to exhibit their inherent skills and demonstrate the huge potential the nation offers.
“Interswitch proudly supports the National Festival of School Science Quiz and Fair competition. We remain committed to providing people development platforms that would help young Nigerians play active roles in national development in technology and beyond. This is quite essential as Nigeria strives towards becoming one of the Top-20 world economies by 2020,” he said.
As host to this year’s Fair, lboro Ekanem, commissioner for science & technology, Akwa Ibom State, said, “Nigerian students have consistently given a good account of themselves at international fairs.
By: KELECHI EWUZIE