It was a special celebration of the talents of young Nigerian students on Monday when the grand finale of the maiden edition of Teens Think Essay Competition was held at the Raddison Blu hotel in GRA, Lagos.
The quality of writing and oral presentations by the students from various schools, both private and public, across Nigeria was what the panel of judges considered before finally awarding the top three prizes.
According to the founder of the initiative, Mrs Kehinde Olesin, the maiden edition has kickstarted what will become an annual event geared towards celebrating the best of Nigerian students who are in their teens and in high schools across the country, particularly those with flair for good prose writing, deep and analytical thinking and oral presentations.
More than 150 entries were received from 35 schools across Lagos, Ogun, Osun, Rivers, Benue and Taraba states. At the event chaired by former Lagos State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde, who is also the Publisher of TCN, the first prize went to a JSS 3 student of Methodist Boys High School, Lagos, Uche Ochefu.
The second prize was carted away by Sunday Boluwatife of Lisabi Grammar School, Abeokuta while Nnena Esther of Ilesa Grammar School in Osun State, who attended the event with her father, picked the third prize.
Each winner went home with trophies, laptops, books and cash prizes courtesy of sponsors and partners of this commendable initiative.
“As a parent and proud mom,” says Mrs Olesin, ” I am absolutely aligned with the fact that the job of passing on the baton of leadership is an all-inclusive one. Parents, teachers, guardians, governments and even the media all play a part in shaping the values of these young ones for outstanding success in their adult lives.”
She added that in line with her vision of preparing outstanding teens for remarkable success in learning and character “it is my utmost desire through this inaugural national essay competition, we have set the ball rolling towards rewarding and encouraging outstanding talents and academic excellence in Nigeria from the teenage stage in order to build a creative, intelligent and productive youth population.”
Other dignitaries at the event included Mr. Boye Adeyeni, MD Hansol Geonetworks; Mr. Peter Nwanna, Country Manager, Society for Family Care; Toying Sam-Emehelu, Lead Consultant at Coreakills Development Services and Mr. Ayo Olesin, a Media Entrepreneur among others.
The celebrated 11-year-old saxophonist, Temilayo Abodunrin, serenaded the guests and students with her soulful tunes.