Segun Balogun, Adewale Saliu, and David Onukwugha, three pupils from Greensprings School, have won top honors in Nigeria for developing a smartphone application that connects craftsmen with customers.
As Team S.A.D, an acronym they created from the initial letter of their first names, the pupils represented their school at the 2023 Conrad Challenge.
They received scholarships totaling $298,000 for their education expenses, a special invitation to represent Nigeria at the Global Conrad Summit in April at NASA’s Johnson Kennedy Space Centre, America, and a $1 million cash award for their concept.
Speaking on the school’s participation in the challenge, Acting Deputy Director of Education, Mrs Feyisara Ojugo said Greensprings presented five teams out of the 230 teams from several schools that participated in the competition.
Ojugo said four of the five teams made it to the finals, with Team S.A.D emerging as the best in cyber-technology and security category, and the best in Nigeria, thus claiming the grand prize after weeks of rigorous efforts.
Apart from the awards given to the winning team, each of the 15 students that made up the four finalist teams received $60,000 worth of scholarships from Clarkson University and awards of excellence
Beyond winning the competition, an overjoyed Ojugo expressed her delight that the students were able to create an app that would aid in resolving a particular issue in the nation; by connecting artisans with those who require them and providing access to a larger market without restrictions of geography.
Also, it makes it possible for customers to instantly use their services at their convenience without having to deal with driving around aimlessly looking for workers. She expressed happiness that the pupils could use what they had learned in the classroom to address societal issues.
She remarked, “I want to say congratulations to all the teams that participated in the competition and I am super proud of our students for emerging winners of this year’s Conrad Challenge. Beyond developing the winning app for the competition, our students have put out a service through tech to help link artisans with those who need their services promptly and efficiently.
“This year, we embedded coding in our curriculum as a core subject that all our students should take. This is hinged on our understanding of the fact that coding is the language of the future. I am happy that the students are taking what they learn in the classroom to solve real-life problems more seriously. I can only look forward to more achievements from our students. The Conrad Challenge is a purpose-driven innovation competition with the aim of creating the next generation of entrepreneurs who will change the world.