‘Nigeria Can Become The Giant Of Africa With Maths’ – Uchechukwu Naike

In an interview with This Day Live, Uchechukwu Naike, highlighted the impact of the Cowbellpedia Secondary School Mathematics TV Quiz Show on students.

The Cowbellpedia which started off as a Lagos-based initaitive. Presently has become a national sensation. Here are some parts of the interview with Uchechukwu Naike;

What do you think is the essence of mathematics to the brand and the nation?

No nation can truly develop without a conscious investment and effort in science and innovation, and mathematics is the bedrock of these two. Mathematics promotes reasoning as it helps the mind to organise complicated situations or problems into clear, simple and logical steps. Experts also believe that since the foundation of science and technology, which is the basic requirement for the development of a nation, is mathematics, the subject therefore plays a vital role not only in human development, but also in nation building.
Also, you will agree with me that a lot of students have a phobia for this subject area, and with the Cowbellpedia platform, we have been able to stimulate the interest of many students in mathematics.

What are the components of the Cowbellpedia initiative?

Cowbellpedia has three major legs: Cowbellpedia Secondary Schools TV Quiz Show, Cowbellpedia Radio Maths Class, which is a five-minute class on radio; And Cowbellpedia Mobile App that can be downloaded on Google Play Store on android devices and App Store on Apple devices.

Has the competition been able to meet its stated objectives?

Yes, it has. The objectives are to awaken the consciousness and interest in mathematics amongst junior and senior secondary school students in Nigeria; improve students’ performance in mathematics across Nigeria; create a credible platform for identifying outstanding students and encouraging excellence in mathematics; provide a creditable platform that will reward excellence in the subject area of mathematics. Student enrolment has been increasing on a yearly basis. In 2019, we have the highest in the history of the competition at over 56,000 students. Also, the brand’s top and bottom line has moved in sympathy with this direction.

Are you considering support for the arts and humanities too? Or, is it only mathematics and science?

Cowbellpedia is presently focused on mathematics and if there are opportunities in future, the company may consider, but not necessarily under the Cowbell brand.

'Nigeria Can Become The Giant Of Africa With Maths' - Uchechukwu Naike 1

What has been the highpoints of sponsoring the competition over the years?

It has been a symbiotic relationship; the brand and the Nigerian child have gained a lot. In terms of high point, an example is Master Ayodeji Akinkuowo, the student that won in the senior category of the maiden edition of the Cowbellpedia Secondary Schools Mathematics TV Quiz Show. He got a government scholarship to Russia, studying Aeronautic Engineering. This was possible, because he made his life’s dream of becoming an aeronautic engineer known during the competition.

Another high point is Munachi Ernest-Eze, who won the junior secondary school category in 2015. Two years later, he won the senior secondary school category. It shows consistency.
The 2018 edition produced another hero in Faith Odunsi, a student of The Ambassadors College, Ota, Ogun State. She set a competition record in speed and accuracy by answering 19 questions in the ‘60 Seconds of Fame’ segment to advance to the semi-finals in the junior category.

Also, we did a documentary, ‘Milk of Kindness’ which focused on the lives of Cowbellpedia participants. And the impact the brand has had on their lives and families.

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