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So You Think You Can Write 2.0 Winning Entry


“BOOM! – MENTAL IGNITION” by Oyakhire Solomon Tolulope


The universe, created by a collision, has shown signs that indicate its continued existence is dependent on more collisions – mental collisions of bright individuals focused on driving sustainable actions. I firmly believe that it is the social responsibility of every inhabitant of the earth to strive towards giving back, at the very least, to her immediate community for sustained growth. With this as a back-drop, my thoughts on the social initiatives for organisations are on three idiosyncrasies: targeted donations, employee volunteerism, and social hackathons.


On targeted donations, companies could dedicate funds to causes that address environmental concerns. Some of these include seed funding for innovative ideas around alternative sources of renewable energy that harness vibrational, wind, and solar power using new or existing materials to address energy needs. This could be a prized challenge that involves the development of a multi-layer catalyst tackling the problem of gas flaring by converting released and elusive methane into methanol; a fund directed towards reducing the impact of environmental damages caused to aquatic animals, improving food security, improving quality of life, and/ or reducing the risk of future violent upheavals within a social eco-system, for instance. Such initiatives will be a positive step in the right direction, not just for strategic philanthropy, but for the sustained existence of the human race.


Another budding action point is encouraging employees to volunteer for programs that tackle banes in the society like the underutilization of potentials in student communities and misinformation of college students. Broaching the subject matter, many university students – primarily those in academic disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), struggle to find internships because of the many inadequacies of the structures in most corporate organisations. A means of tackling this could be for organisations to host career fairs aimed at recruiting students for projects or internship positions.  Hard-working student interns are low-cost hires who tend to bring much value to the table. During my internship, for instance, I made resourceful and valuable recommendations to the top management that would boost production efficiencies and remove some redundancies in their production line, if implemented. Many students crave opportunities to put their creativity to use in functional organisations.


Also, the misinformation of university students in Nigeria is an issue that dampens students' employability chances upon graduation. A way organisations could tackle this problem could be via the encouragement of intra-departmental aggregation of employees assigned to engage with higher institution students periodically. Focus areas could be on skills required by functional units in organisations, fuelling them into more intentional self and career development beings, amongst other suitable directions. Ultimately, this will positively affect not just individual students but organisations, in the sense that the quality of job applicants will improve over time, there will be healthy competition amongst applicants, and new employees will resume better equipped to take on functional roles within the organisations.


Another novel means of creating impact could be the introduction of social hackathons focused on the use of fresh and growing technological trends. These include the use of artificial intelligence and machine learning to facilitate the safety of processing plants and storage vessels for handling refined oil products; the merger of machine learning and data science for accurately informing demand-based oil-product distribution models; the development of models that aid inventory optimization; the analysis and development of marketing models within various demographic regions that rely on behavioural statistics of residents to accurately predict product choices and lots more. Social initiatives of this nature could position today's Nigerian youths for better global impact in the stratosphere of digital trends.


I must commend the efforts of organisations in developing platforms such as this - focused on creative thinking amongst Nigerian youths and stirring ideas to bring about social change in our time. This competition has helped me reflect and collect my experiences into words that hope to address vital issues.  I appreciate the opportunity and hope that this initiative and others adopted in the future continue to sput disruptive and creative revolutions that ultimately advance youths in our society.

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