By Saheed Ibrahim
Ondo State Government is setting the pace for other states in producing school graduates with functional education for creative thinking and development of potential.
The state Commissioner, for Education, Science and Technology, Olufemi Agagu, stressed this at the 2023 Global Entrepreneurship, themed, Fostering Entrepreneurship in Schools,” organised by the Ministry in Akure yesterday.
Agagu described the event as another landmark under the Oluwarotimi Akeredolu-led administration in the State, which would build the entrepreneurial skills for self-development and sustenance among the students.
While emphasising entrepreneurship as a catalyst for industrialisation, Agagu urged every stakeholder to collaborate with the government to invest in the entrepreneurship development of students.
“Given this mindset, Ondo State will be setting the pace in Nigeria in the promotion of entrepreneurial skills among students and in no distant time, we shall be an indefatigable force to be reckoned with,” The Commissioners declared.
He attributed the success stories of developed nations to introducing entrepreneurship skills to their children at early ages, calling for collaborative efforts among stakeholders to invest in entrepreneurship skills development of students for the benefit of everyone.
He reeled out other entrepreneurship programmes keyed into by the present administration, including Students on the Ridges, Street to Skills, Cyber Money, and Entrepreneurship Cycle Funds, among others.
Agagu said the State would continue to support programs that will further develop students’ entrepreneurship skills.
In her speech, the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Mrs Folasade Adegoke, emphasised that Ondo State Government has been introducing students to entrepreneurship skills and creating platforms to display their talents.
She said one of the ways to curb social vices is through practical training of youths in acquiring entrepreneurial skills to get them meaningfully engaged.
In their goodwill messages, partners of the ministry, Accent Entrepreneurship Development Initiative and Quickens Nigeria Limited, urged the state government to ensure entrepreneurship skills are formally integrated into the education curriculum of the State to allow every student to acquire entrepreneurship skills.
The exhibition featured a display of vocational and craft skills by students from various secondary schools across the State.
Students of Aquinas College Akure came first, St Peter’s Unity School came second, and Fiwasaye Girls Grammar School clinched the 3rd position. Abayomi Joshua of Oyemekun Grammar School won a special award for innovation in artificial intelligence. Trophies and cash prizes were presented to the winners.
While commending the students, the Special Adviser to Governor Akeredolu on Gender, Mrs Olamide Falana, encouraged the young innovators to improve their skills, be inquisitive and proffer solutions to problems in their environment.