Tigo Rwanda has awarded ten science students from the 2016 National Examinations for achieving the best results in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects. Each of the students received a 4G-enabled smartphone and year-long 4G internet connectivity.
Tigo said it parts of its ambition to increase digital inclusion among the youth while encouraging academic excellence in the sciences under the ‘JAMA’ youth platform.
Tigo uses this platform to offer products and services for the youth segment that caters to their specific needs, lifestyle and aspirations as they graduate from school and joining the workforce.
Meanwhile, two best-performing male and two best-performing female students, who excelled in combinations that included Computer Science received a two-month mentorship programme within Tigo Rwanda.
The ten best performing students are Jean Stephane Ndayishimiye, Fabrice Ishimwe, Afsanat Ineza, Celestin Habimana, Kevin Ganza, Yves Iraguha, Jean Stephane Ndayishimiye, Gisele Uwamahoro, Fabrice Mugenzi and Fabrice Ishimwe.
The award ceremony, which was organized in partnership with Rwanda Education Board (REB), took place at the Kigali Marriot Hotel. The students had the chance to dine with the CEO and the Minister of State for Primary and Secondary Studies, Isaac Munyakazi.
Tigo CEO, Philip Amoateng, said that, “Tigo wants to celebrate the academic excellence of the ten young Rwandans men and women who, through their hard work and perseverance, excelled in the 2016 national examinations as the best ICT and mathematics students in the country.”
Tigo believes that science and technology is the foundation in which Rwanda’s development is based. “We have shown our support for this in the past and today’s event is further proof of this support,” Amoateng said on Tuesday at Marriot Hotel while addressing the students and their parents.
He told students, “you can become the president or a pilot if you use these smartphones effectively.” The CEO thanked parents who worked tirelessly to support their sons and daughters.
Speaking on behalf of the students, Kevin Ganza, thanked God, parents, and teachers for the support. He said students were grateful for the gadgets and the recognition by Tigo. “Using the tools we were given today, we shall do greater, go further and we are always committed to building this nation,” Ganza said.
Afsah Ineza, a girl who was among the awarded students said her secret for success is to ‘Never give up’ mindset. “I succeeded despite many people who kept saying I can’t make it in science because I am a girl but today I am here as a witness that it is possible and I say to my fellow young girls that `If you dream it, strive for it, never give up and you will achieve it no matter what’’.
Minister Munyakazi encouraged more firms to promote STEMs.
He said private companies should support innovative minds and critical thinkers because they help resolve daily life problems. “The economic growth and success Rwanda has achieved in recent years depends on the collaboration between the private and the public organs,” he said.
“I thank Tigo for its close cooperation with the Ministry of Education, and most especially the Rwanda Education Board. In order to be competitive in the global marketplace, Rwandans need to be competitive in STEM. This can only be possible through partnerships between the academia, government and the private sector,” Munyakazi said.
Meanwhile, last year, Tigo supported different youth empowerment and entrepreneurship programmes based on ICT to the tune of over Frw 70 million.