AN ADDRESS BY THE CHAIRMAN LAGOS CHAPTER OF THE NIGERIAN INSTITUTION OF MECHANICAL ENGINEERS (NIMechE) ENGR. (MRS) FUNMI AKINGBAGBOHUN, (FNIMechE) ON THE OCCASION OF THE PRESS CONFERENCE FOR THE NIMechE INNOVATION CHALLENGE 2017. THURSDAY 5TH JANUARY, 2017.
Executives and Members of NIMechE and NSE here present,
Members of the Press corps,
Representatives of Universities here presents,
Mechanical Engineering Students here presents,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
I am very delighted, to welcome you specially to this Press Conference.
On behalf of the NIMechE family and the Nigeria Society of Engineers, I thank you most sincerely for honouring us with your esteemed presence.
At a time where as a nation, we are shifting our focus inwardly through the adoption of local alternatives and the promotion of local solutions to our challenges, NIMechE Lagos is pleased to announce a ground breaking effort in that direction, the NIMechE Innovation Challenge, 2017.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen,
The Nigerian Institution of Mechanical Engineers (NIMECHE) Lagos Chapter, through the support of the Royal Academy of Science Africa Catalyst 16/17 Award Grant will be sponsoringthis laudable initiative.
This competitionis targeted at students in the Mechanical Engineering departments in ten (10) tertiary institutions across Lagos State. Through this challenge, we intend to support the discovery of original ideas and local solutions to identifiable problems in agriculture, power supply, renewable energy and automation. This we believe will result injob creation, enterprise creation and the promotion of our national development. The challenge will potentially address issues of capacity building in engineering as well as strengthening of engineering practice, cooperation and involvement in the growth of the nation.
Selected institutions are to form 3 student teams each, to tackle one of the four outlined challenges. Entries would be submitted through a special website to be created for that purpose.
NIMECHE working closely with the Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE) has assembled a team of eminent engineering professionals who would review entries and determine the best 3 entries to proceed to the final round from the 10 institutions participating in the competition.
The winners would be measured based on:
· NIMechE compliance
· Affordability and Accessibility
· Technical feasibility
· Sustainability and
· Team Capabilities
Selected Teams will benefit from the experience of NIMechE Supervisors as they develop a funded prototype of their innovations. These innovations will be presented to the public on the NIMechE Innovation Day later in April this year.
This challenge which is the first of its kind in Nigeria will set the standard for more competitions, discoveries and cross-sector collaborations in the future. We hope to establish a strong relationship with other sectors of the economy like manufacturing, marketing and agriculture and leverage on the solutions proffered for deployment all over the nation. By this challenge, we envisage a renewed relationship between professionals and a sense of shared objectives.
As we look towards the future as a nation, the NIMechE Innovation Challenge aspires to continually engage stakeholders both locally and internationally and strengthen corporation in the area of technology and human resources development. We are convinced that this will result in an improved perception of the engineering industry in Nigeria at home and abroad.
Furthermore the creative genius of the Nigerian youths will have an opportunity for expression through this challenge. Many young people across the nation will be inspired by the quality of solutions we hope to receive during this competition.
Prices will be in form of trophies, cash and special interventions in the departments and opportunities to help scale winning products for commercialization.
To ensure the project is delivered to its full potentials, NIMechE will be working with an international and national project manager, IBLF Global UK and the Mechanical Engineering Skills Acquisition Limited (MESA) Lagos Nigeria. They would provide guidance and direction for the project and ensure best practice is maintained at all times.
I want to at this point, specially thank our sponsors, the Royal Academy of Engineering London for investing in the future of our development as a nation through this challenge. I also want to thank all other partners involved in the project and the executives and members of NIMechE and the NSE for their unflinching support. Finally, I want to thank very specially all journalists and media houses represented here today.
We look forward to forging an historical partnership with talented Nigerian youths and the academic community as we deliver viable and affordable solutions for national transformation.
Thank you and God bless you.
Engr. (Mrs) FunmiAkingbagbohun, FNIMechE.
Chairman, Lagos Chapter NIMechE.