Posted by News Express | 5 October 2016 | 2,596 times
Acting managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mrs. Ibim Semenitari, has expressed delight over the emergence of 200 beneficiaries of the NDDC 2016 Foreign Post-Graduate Scholarship, describing them as young, actively intelligent natives of the Niger Delta region who have won for themselves scholarship to pursue higher academic laurels overseas.
Speaking Tuesday at the pre-departure briefing held at Banquet Hall of Hotel Presidential, Port Harcourt, Semenitari pointed out that “theirs is a story of what can be achieved through hard work, commitment and determination. It is the story of what success that can be achieved when men and women commit themselves to doing what is right at the right time.”
She disclosed that of the 200 that won the scholarship this year, 51 are Ph.D candidates while 149 are for MSc.
She explained that “merit was the consideration. And we are proud to announce that each of them is a worthy beneficiary, having scaled the highly competitive Computer Based Test; performed excellently in the tasking Oral Interview, and therefore, achieved a high aggregate.”
The NDDC chief added: “I am proud to announce that in the midst of the high competition, some of the candidates stood out in their performance and deserve singular mention. As a Commission that goes for and celebrates excellence, we have isolated 18 beneficiaries, each in each level, from each state, for recognition for their exceptional performance.
“Interestingly, the candidate with overall best result is a lady. The lesson here is that under fair environment and competition, our males and females can excel and jointly transform our region into one of our dream.”
According to Semenitari, the narrative surrounding the NDDC Foreign Post-Graduate Scholarship Programme is woven into the very fabric of the Commission. “It was borne of the need to bridge the huge manpower deficit in the Niger Delta region especially in Engineering, Science and Technology, EST, the fields that drive the oil industry.
“It was conceived to build a pool of professionals whose intellectual mobility will be in tandem with global trend and procure proper and adequate space for the region as the goose that lays the golden egg.
“The motive was, and remains, to garner and horn the great natural possibilities and intellectual endowments that abound in the region. The stories today are testimonials that the motive was right and the motif truly determined to make a difference. That is what NDDC stands for – to make a difference.”
Semenitari also recalled that the Scholarship Programme, which commenced in 2010, is a good story to be told. “And,” she said, “that is why today, as the latest beneficiaries prepare to embark on their pursuit of the Golden Fleece, but in the academia, overseas, the NDDC is proud that the Niger Delta is sending out the best and the brightest off a pool of about 3,000 applicants.
“The competition was keen and intense and a proof that our narrative as a region is not only about those negatives that daily occupy greater space in our news holes. But that our youths are among the most brilliant and positively mobile.
“Since its inception six years ago, a total of about 1, 2411 scholars in the PhD. and MSc. levels from the nine mandate states of the Commission have benefitted. Some of them today enjoy overseas job placements with one employed as Graduate Assistant in a UK University. A breakdown shows that total number of beneficiaries in the MSc level stands at 1,066 while in PhD, a total of 345 have benefitted.”