Date published: Thu 29 Jun 2017
Author: A. Cook
In 2016, Lower First Form student, Femi Owolade-Coombes, was a finalist for the ‘BT Young Pioneers Award’ at the Tech4Good Awards. Reflecting on the experience he describes feeling honoured to have been shortlisted, and inspired by meeting people across the country who are doing fantastic work with technology; last year, the winners of his category created an app to help service Water Aid pumps around the world, in order to prevent them going into disrepair. Although he did not win, this did not detract from how proud Femi, his family and Whitgift were, that he was shortlisted amongst such an innovative and impressive group.
A year later, Femi was asked by Mark Walker, the co-ordinator, to speak at the networking and introductory event for all the Tech4Good finalists of 2017. On Tuesday 13 June, in the London BT Tower, he gave a presentation to the finalists about how inspiring the awards were last year; how they had motivated him to utilise networking opportunities and social media, and to be ambitious with his next projects. He then explained how busy he has been over the last 12 months: setting up his robot workshops, attending Tate Modern events, receiving a Legacy Diana Award, planning the Bangladesh project, and securing sponsorship from the Micro:bit Foundation (after networking with them at the Tech4Good events last year).
Femi thoroughly enjoyed visiting the BT Tower for a second time, and his talk was very well received. His infectious enthusiasm has created further links with the Tech4Good awards, and BT, for his future projects. Currently, Femi is working on taking his robot workshop to India. He is raising £1,000 to run ‘Robot & Physical Computing’ workshops for 100 children in Bangladesh, all from low income and disadvantaged backgrounds. You can read about all of Femi’s events, projects and thoughts on his blog here.