In today’s world, Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are vital, not just to individual consumers, but also to the development of countries large and small. As regulator for the Electronic Communications Sector (ECS) in The Bahamas the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA) recognizes the role that ICTs can play in improving the lives of Bahamians throughout the archipelago. To promote this concept among young Bahamians, on 29 September 2017 URCA officially launched its first ICT Competition for students and young adults throughout the country. The launch took place at the R.M. Bailey High School supported by the principal, Mr. Colin Johnson and director of the schools’ Student Success Programme, Ms. Monique Johnson-Mullings.
URCA’s ICT Competition aims to promote the use of, access to and the development of content based ICTs in The Bahamas. URCA sees young Bahamians as the most important and influential pioneers of an ICT enabled future for The Bahamas. URCA hopes that this competition will help promote and encourage students and young adults to develop ideas, concepts and solutions for the use of ICTs to achieve more efficient delivery of essential services in The Bahamas and development of our communities, and to thereby become part of the global ecosystem of ICT content creators.
URCA’s CEO Mr. Stephen Bereaux said at the launch, “Our hope with this competition is to spark the imagination and curiosity of our young people to consider how ICT can be used to improve the nation that we all live in. We want to hear more stories about our young people using technology to improve your homes, your communities, your schools, and the country at large. We want to see competitions like this and others prompt them to think about creative and innovative uses of ICT to positively impact their world.”
The competition is divided into three categories – Primary for students in grades four to six; Secondary for students in grades seven through twelve; and Young Adults for those aged from eighteen to thirty. Participants are invited to submit their entries on or before 15 November 2017. Prizes will be awarded to the top three places in each category. For the primary category, students are challenged to imagine their school without chalk and paper and depict how they would use modern technology to help their school better serve its students either in a 200-word essay, an 11 x 17inch illustration or a 2-minute or less video. At the secondary level students are asked to produce a 5-minute or shorter video demonstrating the use of ICTs in a creative way that provides a solution to one of seven areas of national development. For the young adults category individuals are asked to develop a concept that would enhance the provision of services in one of the same seven areas of national development.
Top prizes include cash awards, electronic devices and for the winner in the Young Adult category, an all-expense paid trip to an ITU event, to be identified by URCA.
For a more complete breakdown of the competition guidelines, interested persons are asked to visit URCA’s website at www.urcabahamas.bs, email URCA at email@example.com or call them at 242-396-5237 in New Providence or 242-300-8722 from the family islands.