MultiChoice Zimbabwe has put out a call for entries for the 2015 DStv Eutelsat Star Awards competition, a pan-African event that is open to all students between 14 and 19 years of age and which last year was won by a Zimbabwean, Jospeh Mahiya of the Hellenic International Academy in Harare.
Liz Dziva, publicity and public relations manager of MultiChoice Zimbabwe, said the call was being made to all Zimbabwean students to enter the competition, which has categories featuring production of posters or compiling essays and is focused on furthering understanding of satellite technology and how satellites benefit the Earth and all its people.
“The DStv Eutelsat Star Awards results from a partnership between MultiChoice Africa and Eutelsat that started in 1999,” she said.
“This pan-African collaboration has over the years created meaningful engagement with students, the academic community and the scientific world. Since its inception, the competition has drawn more than 3 000 entries from across the continent and has helped stimulate a passion for science among young people.”
Entry forms for the competition are available from any MultiChoice office or can be downloaded from www.dstvstarawards.com. The deadline for entry is November 5. The competition comprises national and international adjudication, with first assessment of entries at country level by a panel of local judges who select country winners and runners-up. A continental panel then selects the top four overall entries.
Last year the panel was chaired by European Space Agency astronaut Paolo Nespoli, who was assisted by a panel of industry experts, all of them highly impressed by the overall standard of the competition.
The overall essay and poster winners are eligible for a trip for two people to Eutelsat facilities in Paris, with the essay winner also invited witness a live rocket launch. Runners-up win trips to South Africa as guests of MultiChoice Africa. Schools attended by the overall winners will also each receive a DStv installation, including satellite dish, television, state-of-the-art PVR decoder and free access to the DStv Education Bouquet. Results of the 2015 competition will be announced at an awards ceremony in February 2016.
“What is most exciting for us in Zimbabwe is that we have seen through the 2014 competition that it is possible for Zimbabweans to be winners and runner-up not only at their own national level but also at continental level, and we hope for a good entry this year to perhaps see if our country can achieve international winning status yet again,” said Ms Dziva.