It is no longer news that many of our students in secondary and tertiary schools have defective backgrounds in science. Many of these students have also lost interest in pursuing careers in science and technology. Worse still, most young and aspiring scientists
have preoccupied their minds with the notion that achieving success in science is like a mission impossible. In fact, some have asked, “Can a Nigerian make impact in science?” These doubts and fears have in no small measure led to unwillingness by most students in pursuing careers in science, mathematics and engineering.
We have also found, over the years, that teaching a subject to a student and at the same time, providing him or her with the requisite infrastructure, is not enough in ensuring that the student do well in that particular field of learning. (You may inquire, if in doubt, why all scientists in California Institute of Technology or Massachusetts Institute of Technology are not producing at the same level.) Knowledge mixed with inspiration is what does it! In other words, teaching a student chemistry is not enough for that student to use the knowledge acquired to advance the subject area or change his life or that of others. But when this student is taught and at the same time inspired or motivated, he or she is bound to make impact. The question is: how do we provide this much-needed inspiration and motivation to our young and aspiring scientists?
Bridging this gap therefore forms the thrust of the Abuja Science, Technology and Innovation Promotion Confab for Young and Aspiring Scientists. This annual event is an initiative of Global Science Development Initiatives (a non-profit organization, championing a cause in science popularization and education) and is meant to provide the platform for young and aspiring scientists in the Nigerian secondary schools to rub shoulders with renowned scientists in the country; thus providing them with the much-needed inspiration and vision that will drive them to their future innovations and discoveries. The meeting also hopes to open up new research areas which the students may in future pursue. It will again provide the students the opportunity of learning from the ‘masters’ themselves (our great Nigerian scientists); know how they earned their recognitions; what kind of science they are doing (or did), and how they are doing it. Students will indeed be made to know the fears and challenges which these great Nigerian scientists had and how they surmounted them while growing up as scientists.
The theme of this year event (which also is the 2nd edition) is: “The Impact of Great Nigerian Scientists in Motivating and Challenging Young and Talented Students Pursuing Careers in Science, Mathematics and Engineering”.
We hereby plead with the general public and to every lover of science to support in this event. I will be available on 08064383985 or firstname.lastname@example.org to answer your queries and for further discussion.
Coordinator, Abuja STI Promotion Confab for Young and Aspiring Scientists