MAIZE announces 2019 Youth Innovators Awards – Africa
IITA has developed a reputation as an organization that provides equal opportunities for every willing person to learn and grow. Apart from the regular staff, IITA has a training mandate that provides opportunity for young people to work as interns and volunteers. Volunteering at IITA allows a volunteer to interact with professionals from different backgrounds, both locally and internationally. It also helps in developing the prospects of the individual.
On 22 January, IITA Director General Nteranya Sanginga, visited the Communication Unit of IITA Ibadan, during which he interacted with volunteers at the unit. He commended the two young people for their selfless contribution to IITA.
During the interaction, he asked questions pertaining to study background and experience so far in IITA. He encouraged the volunteers seize chances that present themselves by discussing points relating to professionalism and advancement in career. DG Sanginga described the importance of volunteering as a way to create opportunities for a person whose career is budding.
An important point highlighted by DG Sanginga is the need to be proactive. He said that professionalism requires being in control of situations, causing something to happen rather than waiting to respond to it after it happens. In addition to that, it is necessary to monitor and evaluate the impact of output. This, for the media section, is achieved by reaching out to the participants in the project/event to find out if related news stories met up with their expectation, whether it was shared with other group members and how far-reaching the published story was. According to DG Sanginga, not only is this an approach towards ascertaining the value or worth of work done, it is also a way of assessing opportunities and building relationships.
Head of IITA Communication Unit, Katherine Lopez, noted that “we have a good team of young people working here” and corroborated the view of DG Sanginga regarding self-motivation and seizing opportunities.
Upcoming projects requiring the participation of the unit were discussed.