The winners of the Unicaf Nigeria Essay Competition have been announced.
A statement issued on Monday said Chinelo Dike-Okonkwo, the first winner, was awarded a full scholarship for a Master’s degree of her choice with Unicaf University through online delivery, plus $300 in cash.
Eze Cornelius Chidiebere emerged the second winner and received an 80 percent scholarship for a Master’s degree with Unicaf University through online delivery plus $200 in cash.
Oyafemi Toluwalase Augustine won the third prize and received a 75 percent scholarship for a Master’s degree with Unicaf University through online delivery plus a free tablet.
The statement said the judging committee expressed satisfaction with the high overall standard of the essays submitted and selected the three top winners, who received their prizes at an awards ceremony held online, on Friday, July 3, 2020.
According to the statement, the awards ceremony, which brought together the three winners, members of the Unicaf Nigeria team, and members of the Unicaf International Marketing team at the organisation’s HQ in Cyprus, was held via the Zoom app because of the measures to contain the Covid-19 disease.
The statement thanked the over 500 Bachelor degree holders, who took part in the essay competition ‘Is online learning the future of education?’ to win scholarships and cash.
Speaking, the first winner Dike-Okonkwo, thanked Unicaf and Unicaf University for this great opportunity to earn a Master’s degree online at no cost and without having to give up work, or move away from home.
She added: “Unicaf’s goal for educating youths in underserved markets has always struck me as a noble initiative. Now, under Unicaf’s guidance, I am privileged to be a part of a growing number of beneficiaries, who can study for high quality degrees without the financial burden of high fees, that typically comes with such studies. I would like to tell every person out there, longing to further their educational pursuits, in a bid to accelerate their careers, to keep the faith, without being deterred by challenges and to remain true to themselves and their goals.”
The second winner, Chidiebere, while accepting his prize, said: “I feel deeply honoured and elated for this remarkable recognition and the amazing opportunity of a scholarship for an online Master’s degree. I want to extend my gratitude to Unicaf and to the panel of judges that critiqued my work and found it worthy of this great privilege.
“Being in the midst of a pandemic, we now understand that the world is at war against Covid-19, and is economically weakened because of lockdowns, which have brought many universities to a stand still…. Now is the time to explore new methods of education and new perspectives, to turn to online education as the solution. The idea of online education is imperative in these challenging times, and we must use it to secure the future of our higher education system and a brighter future for us all.”
Winner of the third prize, Augustine, said: “I would like to thank Unicaf for the wonderful opportunity of helping me to further my education and enhance my CV. My friends and family are also extremely happy for this amazing opportunity. I hope to do my part in proving that Unicaf made the right choice in granting me this opportunity.”
The statement said Unicaf Nigeria was planning more essay competitions with high value prizes for the winners in the near future, adding that details about the next Unicaf essay competition will be announced in the media as well as on Unicaf social media and website.