Ghana will have its first Science Fair next year as organizers of the National Science and Maths Quiz (NSMQ) are planning to add it to their successful educational brand.
“This is in our efforts to demystify science to enthusiasts to bring to fore areas which are not well known, especially in Ghana,” the managing director of Primetime Limited, Nana Akua Ankomah Asare, said in an interview after the NSMQ finals.
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Over the past three weeks, the University of Ghana Business School auditorium has witnessed 67 keenly contested battles of intellect between 135 senior high schools (SHS) across the country.
For ultimate winners Prempeh College, last year’s elimination by Ada SHS was the drive to get them to win the competition, revealed coordinator of the school, Mr. Eric Kwaku ‘Procedure’ Yeboah.
Adisadel College and University Practice SHS were the other two finalists in a knife-edge competition to see who is who when it comes to knowledge in science and mathematics.
“Thorough preparation after our disgraceful elimination won us the trophy this year. One major challenge, however, was keeping the names of the final contestants a secret until the quiz finals in Accra. This we do to keep students motivated and not conceited,” said Yeboah.
The two finalist for Prempeh College, Aboagye Danso Daniel and Bio Ransford, who were the toast of the day paid glowing tribute to their coordinator for squeezing them to give out their best.
Prempeh’s last time of winning the finals was in 1996 having won the maiden edition in 1994. They get to keep the trophy after winning it for the third time.
Last year’s winners, Mfantsipim School, were knocked out of the competition by Kumasi High School.
“Nothing surprises me any longer in this competition. It is about preparation and determination to win, not the name,” said quiz mistress, Dr. Elsie Effah Kaufmann.
Kaufman describes this year’s competition as, “A very good one, but I am expecting them to do their homework and get the little things right next year.”
For the organizers, it is refreshing to see schools that people don’t generally consider science schools coming to the competition and excel.
“Doing well academically is not the preserve of the so-called big schools, but there are lesser-known schools who must be applauded,” said Nana Akua Ankomah Asare.
University Practice SHS is one of the new entrants who keep raising the bar. Represented by Faara Hussein and Felix Agbavor, for the third time asking, their first two attempts saw the school reach the quarter and semi finals respectively.
“We are not disappointed losing at the finals. We are happy our students promised taking us further every year and they have delivered on that,” said Mr. Benjamin Yawson, coordinator for University Practice.
Much of the credit he said goes to the Science and Maths Quiz Club the school has and its dedicated teachers.
Bennet Brown and Samuel Appia-Kubi did their best to secure the first ever NSMQ trophy for Adisadel College but it was not to be.
Prempeh College got GH₵40000 with each contestant and teacher taking home Gh₵4000 with a laptop. Also, Prof. Mariam Ewurama Addy Award instituted by Bubune Adih, a past contestant, went to Prempeh for having the most outstanding contestants.
Highlights of the 20th edition of the competition saw significant changes this year as renowned scientists took students through mentorship sessions. Participating schools also had the chance to visit the Planetarium for sightseeing.
Conference of Assisted Secondary Schools (CHASS) and Ghana Education Service sponsored the quiz with support from Citi FM, SC Johnson, GTP NuStyle and EPP Bookshop.
The quiz shows on GTV on Saturdays and Wednesdays.
Submitted by Abubakar Ibrahim