Methodist Girls, Prempeh SHS present global awards to President
Two senior high schools (SHSs) yesterday presented their global awards in robotics and coding to the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, at the Jubilee House in Accra.
The schools — Methodist Girls’ SHS, Mamfe in the Eastern Region, and Prempeh College, Kumasi in the Ashanti Region — won the global awards after emerging champions in the local and continental competitions.
President Akufo-Addo, who was visibly excited about their achievements, said the students had brought glory to not only their schools but had also brought honour to the country, adding that such prestigious trophies which had “filled the Jubilee House with energy and talent” were rare.
“I want to congratulate each and every one of you on these outstanding achievements that have brought you here,” he said.
Mamfe Methodist SHS
Methodist Girls’ SHS was represented by only first-year students, who won the first, second and third places in Africa, after beating 5,000 other teams.
They went ahead to represent the Africa Region on the global stage, where they eventually won the World Championship in Robotics and Coding competition in December 2020.
For its part, Prempeh College won the Robofest national competition in 2019 and proceeded to beat 22 other teams, which included the USA, South Korea, Taiwan, China, Singapore and Hong Kong, to the first, third and fifth positions to be crowned global champions in the competition.
In all, the Prempeh team bagged 22 trophies for its effort.
The task for the teams was to put golf balls on the tip of a hole using robots constructed and programmed by the teams. There were also bottles by the sides of the hole slot on the game field which the robots tried knocking down using putter and golf balls.
Due to the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic in late 2019, the teams could not travel and, therefore, participated in the competition virtually.
They were later presented with their trophies last April.
President Akufo-Addo said by their performance, the students had given him and the nation encouragement for the future, adding: “We all know that mastery of our artificial intelligence is the way to future prosperity, greatness and the rest.”
He said it was appropriate that at the time the nation was striving to become a leader in artificial intelligence, it was blessed with such talented young students, a situation he described as “very reassuring for me and for our country”.
According to the President, those who began Silicon Valley in the USA were very young at the time, and they were able to change the way the world worked.
He said the students also had it in their power to change the way the country was working, for the better.
He gave an assurance that the government would work to ensure that science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education took a firm root in Ghana, for which reason STEM schools would be established across the country.
He added that teachers would be given the needed training to be able to educate students adequately in the programme, since “this is the way to the future and I am determined that we grab the future”.