25 Teams for science challenge inducted

Twenty-five finalist teams for the Greater Accra Edition of the Ghana Science and Tech Explorer Prize (GSTEP) Challenge have been inducted to start their work.

With the induction, the teams, which are made up of junior high school (JHS) students, have two months to create and design their prototype (project for the competition) slated for December this year to win the ultimate prize.

Each of the teams is being provided with the needed resources to create a project which seeks to find a lasting solution or create a product in their environment that will be reviewed before the competition for the final winner.

Another set of 25 teams will be selected from the Ashanti Region soon to compete with the Greater Accra teams during the finals, bringing the finalists for the ultimate to 50 groups nationwide.

With the help of mentors and coaches, the teams are supposed to come out with their own initiatives or solutions to challenges confronting their neighbourhood or community.

The Director for International Development at Challenge Works UK, Ms Constance Agyemang, said a total of 800 entries were submitted for the Greater Accra Edition and after a thorough assessment by independent assessors, the 25 teams were selected.

“This is a lifetime opportunity hence, it is essential that you take advantage of it, and give out your best in building your prototypes,” she said.

The Director of Science Resource Centre of the Ghana Education Service (GES), Olivia Opare, enumerated the importance of STEM education and urged the participants to take the competition seriously.

She inspired them to use critical thinking, research and innovative ideas to bring up solutions to issues threatening their communities and the country as a whole.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Digital Innovation Manager of Fondation Botnar, Siddhartha Jha, for his part, indicated that the programme was designed to prepare the leaders of tomorrow who could address societal challenges effectively by putting technology and critical problem-solving to good use.

As part of the event, the finalists participated in a series of workshops aimed at providing them with skills to enable them to carry out their activities effectively during the programme.

The workshops were focused on STEM-based education, team building and collaboration, entrepreneurial skills, business plan development, prototyping and project development.

The finalists also participated in a drone flying experience led by Ghana Flying Labs and have also been assigned mentors who would be taking them through a series of mentorship sessions for two months.

GSTEP is funded by Fondation Botnar, a Swiss philanthropic foundation working to improve the health and well-being of young people living in cities around the world.

The programme is also supported by some institutions in Ghana to advance the course of practical learning across the two participating regions (Ashanti and Greater Accra). Other institutions which are collaborating towards the success of the project are the Graphic Communications Group Ltd, Fidelity Bank, Stanbic Bank and Multimedia Group.

SOURCE : Graphiconline

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