By David Nsa
Some members of the alumni association of the Edgerley Girls Memorial Secondary School have identified the opportunity to reconnect with friends, the chance to give back to society and the need to improve the intake of the institution as the reason for the celebration of the it’s 120th anniversary.
This is even as the institution graduated 16 students as its anniversary celebration with Miss Bassey Niamenyin emerging best in academic.
The Director of Administration of the Cross River State Carnival Commission, Mrs. Eme Affiah; a clergywoman and alumnae from the set of 1991, Pastor Eke Okpo-Ene and Ghanaian, Mrs. Blessing Foso told CrossRiverWatch in separate interviews that the decision to celebrate the institution was inspired by so many reasons.
“Some years back the intake was low, last year it was low but when we started talking about Edgerley at 120 it increased,” Mrs. Affiah who is the Chairman of the planning committee told CrossRiverWatch after a carnival by old and current students of the institution on Friday.
She continued: “When we were on the carnival route, we were sharing fliers to parents that if you want your child to be part of Edgerley this is what to do. And so we believe that with this rally we will have more girls come into Edgerley; intake will increase and the standard is already basic, it is not going down it is increasing (and) already we have better facilities for them. Every parent can send their child to Edgerley knowing that their child will be in a conducive environment.”
Affiah who noted that the education standard of the institution is at a higher level than other peer institutions, stressed that the carnival achieved beyond marketing as it was time for old friends to bond as well as current students.
“You know you can forget your friends in primary (school), friends in University, but the ones in secondary school you spend six years some five years probably in the same room and you are becoming an adult those things you learn; the mischief and all kind of things you learnt, it is a bonding thing, you bond with people and when you grow and get into University well, you can’t forget your friends in secondary school; that is what it is,” Affiah said.
Furthermore, she disclosed that the alumni has taken steps to ensure continuous development and sustainability for the institution.
She said that: “What next? Edgerley is 120 and Edgerley girls have come together with this celebration, there is no going back. Already we have a project fund, we have a project account that is for beautifying Edgerley, projects, renovations, more inputs, so we will do more for Edgerley. It is a celebration that has ended but activities and production of what Edgerley should do is still on.”
The alumni donated a structure to the institution which was commissioned on Saturday morning by Elder Akpabio Ekpo Nkpang.
Meanwhile, Pastor Okpo-Ene who described the carnival as a “continuous academic carnival,” pointed out that the alumni had to fuse sensitisation and awareness into the celebration to let people know that they don’t have to travel far to get quality education.
“We are here to let people know that Edgerley is still on and this is how far we have gone. We all know that advertisement, marketing is the way to let people know that something is on going and how efficient it is.
“To some persons over the years, Edgerley has been very quiet, nothing is really happening and so many people feel that there is no Edgerley.
“To us it is to let people know that there is still Edgerley and with the development of new schools outside Cross River State some people believe that there is no school that can give the best. So, we are here to let people know that Edgerley is still what it use to be,” she said.
For Mrs. Foso, her decision to travel down from Ghana was premised on the fact that the carnival and other activities will create awareness for the school.
“I knew about the 120th celebration of the school so I decided to come,as an old girl now a woman,” Foso said.
On the impact of the carnival, she averred that: “It has helped to create awareness that there is a school called Edgerley memorial girls secondary school and with that we believe that it is going to increase enrolment into the school.
“That is the major reason for the carnival. Not just to show off but to let people know that there is a school called Edgerley; that there is a school which the street Edgerley was named after and it has been in existence and having been in existence for that number of years, there is a lot that has been said about the school not just academically but in all areas of life because the products of this school including myself are now all over the world and they are shining in their field of endeavors.
“So, we recommend this school to parents to bring their wards to Edgerley memorial secondary school they will not regret it.”
The carnival was preceded by sporting activities including a spelling bee competition between Edgerley memorial and Hope Waddell training institute.
Master Praise Ekwe of Hope Waddell emerged winner after a runoff between him and Miss Favor Esin Otie of Edgerley Memorial.
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