Program encourages entrepreneurship among Nigerian high school students
California State University, Chico Press release
July 18, 2005
“SAGE” High School Students from Kaduna Going to USA for World Cup Competition
Secondary school students from Nigeria competing against Poland? Russia versus Ghana? US versus Tajikistan? South Africa versus China? Ukraine versus the Philippines? Yes, but this is not a soccer match-it’s the “SAGE World Cup.” Rather than kicking a ball through a goal, these Students for the Advancement of Global Entrepreneurship (SAGE) will explain how they have completed entrepreneurship projects and social ventures for the betterment of their communities. The best team will be crowned “SAGE World Cup” champion on 11-14 August in San Francisco. Gray’s International College from Kaduna State will represent Nigeria in this unique program that combines local collaboration with global competition.
SAGE founder and executive director, Dr. Curtis DeBerg, has been in Nigeria for the past week to observe the first annual Nigeria SAGE competition and to meet with leading government officials and business leaders. DeBerg, who is also a professor at California State University, Chico, was on hand on 2 July when the first Nigeria SAGE champion was crowned at the Kaduna Trade Fair Conference Hall.
“Nigeria is the most recent country participating. The SAGE program promotes entrepreneurship and community service by linking high school students to business leaders and university mentors in their area,” DeBerg said. “Each high school SAGE team is placed into a competitive league, much like athletic events. The national winner then earns the right to travel to the World Cup.”
One of Gray’s winning projects was the Rural Empowerment Initiative, where the students introduced a program to a remote village of the Kaduna North Local Government, called Doka Village. SAGE students taught the villagers how to extract milk and make cake out of Soya beans. Four of the villagers have now started a business and are now generating profits.
Another business is REAL BIZ, where the students used their school’s bakery to start a business making bread to serve at breakfast time. The students wrote a business plan and submitted it to school administrators, who approved it. The students appointed a manager, accountant, supervisor and sales personnel, and have had several “bread making days,” and are now selling the bread at a profit.
The high school students are evaluated by a panel of business and civic leaders. Among the seven judges at the Kaduna competition was House of Representatives member, the Honorable Abdul Oroh, from Edo State. Hon. Oroh [Owan Federal Constituency] has pledged to support SAGE by participating in future SAGE events and competitions. Hon. Oroh said, “This program has the potential to change the face of education in Nigeria, and I am pleased to offer my support.” Another judge was the State Coordinator and Chairman of the State Coordination Committee for NAPEP, Mr. Musa Usman. DeBerg said that, although SAGE is brand new in Nigeria, that he hopes to roll out SAGE to 60 high schools next year, with a four-year goal to implement SAGE into every high school in Nigeria.
For more information about Nigeria SAGE, contact Co-Founder Agwu Amogu at 08033210037 or email: amogu51 [AT] yahoo .com. You may also visit www.csuchico.edu/sage.