UBA Foundation, the corporate social responsibility arm of United Bank for Africa (UBA) Plc, has announced the call for entries for the 2016 edition of its annual National Essay Competition.
Ijeoma Aso, the Managing Director/CEO of UBA Foundation, at the press launch briefing held at the UBA Head Office in Lagos, on Friday, September 23, 2016, announced that the Foundation will start receiving entries from eligible participants in senior secondary schools in Nigeria.
The briefing was attended by students from different secondary schools in Lagos including Holy Child College, International School, University of Lagos, High Hope Academy, Ojota Senior Secondary Scholl, Caleb International College, CMS Grammar School and Crescent Secondary School.
Entries for the essay competition opens on September 23, 2016 and will close on November 4, 2016. The essay topic for this year is "If you were in a position to help the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), what would you do?"
Speaking during the media briefing, Ijeoma Aso, said the essay competition provides an opportunity for students in senior secondary schools in Nigeria to win prizes in form of educational grants.
The first prize for the UBA National Essay Competition is a N1 million educational grant for the winner to study in any African university of his or her choice. The second and third prizes are N750,000 and N500,000 educational grants respectively.
Aso explained that the competition is part of the Foundation's initiative to promote creative and analytical thinking among senior secondary students in Nigeria and across Africa and is a follow up on the Foundation’s Read Africa initiative, which promotes reading culture among students through mentoring and free distribution of Africa literary classics in secondary schools. The national essay competition is also held in Ghana and Senegal.
Entries received for the competition will be reviewed by a distinguished panel of judges made up of professors from reputable Nigerian Universities, who will then shortlist 12 best essays for further assessment.
A second round of the competition will involve the 12 finalists who will write a second supervised essay from which three best essays will be selected.
"Three best essays will be selected as the overall winners from 12 finalists that will emerge from the first round of the competition," said Ijeoma Aso, Managing Director/CEO, UBA Foundation.
The top three winners of the competition will win educational grants to study in any African university of their choice.
The Group Head, Media, Charles Aigbe, said the essay competition is one of UBA’s contribution to educational development in Nigeria and across Africa.
"As a pan-African financial services group with operations in 22 countries, we aim to impact on the countries we do business through the three main anchors of education, environment and social empowerment. UBA is Africa’s global bank and we believe that we should give back to the society and this is an important part of our business culture. Over the years, we have contributed to the development of education in Nigeria by giving various grants, endowment chairs and facilities to institutions all over the country," said Aigbe
He urged students to take the national essay competition seriously as it provides a massive opportunity for them to change their lives for the better, adding that the competition "is part of the process to make our younger ones to be better for their families, the nation, continent and the world as a whole."
The National Essay Competition also runs in some other African countries including Ghana and Senegal.
As the Corporate Social Responsibility arm of the UBA Group, UBA Foundation is committed to the socio-economic betterment of the communities in which UBA operates, focusing on development in the areas of Environment, Education, Economic Empowerment and Special Projects.
UBA foundation remains a role model for other corporate organizations in Africa. The Foundation has dedicated resources to ensuring that CSR is not simply conceived as a marketing tool in the corporate world but as a corporate contribution towards promoting sustainable development in communities.