*Oscar Onyema


By Ngozi Onyeakusi — The Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE) is set to announce the winners of the 2018 edition of its NSE annual essay competition for students in Senior Secondary Schools in all states of the Federation. The Grand Finale and Awards Ceremony is scheduled to take place on Friday, November 16, 2018 at the Civic Center, Ozumba Mbadiwe Avenue, Victoria Island, Lagos.

The topic for this year’s edition, “Discuss how technology can promote financial literacy and encourage investment habit among youths” aims to bring the subject of technology to the fore and get young people thinking about how to adopt technology as a veritable tool for building a financially savvy generation.

This year’s competition, supported by Jim Ovia Foundation, Access Bank Plc and Prime Atlantic Limited, was opened for entry on Monday, July 16, 2018 and closed on Friday, October 26, 2018. We received over 20,000 entries across the Federation, 50% more than the total entries received in 2017.

The competition recognises the top 10 essays, while, the top three essay writers will be rewarded with equity investments, university scholarship funds and personal laptops/tablets at the Awards Ceremony. The winners will also be hosted to a Closing Gong ceremony at The Exchange. The schools represented by the top three winners will be recognised and presented with prizes such as trophies, desktop computers and printers. The remaining seven (7) essay writers will receive consolation prizes, certificates of achievement and recognition at the awards ceremony.

Mr. Olumide Orojimi, Head, Corporate Communications, NSE, expressed his happiness about this year’s NSE Essay Competition and how it has increased the reach of The Exchange’s CSR programmes in line with its sustainability mantra. In his words, “Improving financial literacy is important to the future of Nigeria as they are an important stakeholder group as it relates to planning for a sustainable future as a nation. This is one of the ways we contribute to building a financially literate populace that can access various financial inclusion offerings available to them”.

The essay entries were graded by a team of highly qualified examiners, identified in partnership with the Chartered Institute of Stockbrokers. There were three stages of grading: At the first stage, all entries were marked and essay writers who scored 70% and above were invited for the second stage, which required that students write an in-person follow up essay on a related topic at any of the NSE branches closest to them. The top ten (10) essay writers progressed to the third stage which eventually produced the top three (3) essay writers. This rigorous level of assessment is to ensure that only the best essay writer emerges.