Three female students from Ghana emerged the Overall Best Student, the first runner-up and the second runner-up of the 2017 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
They competed with colleagues from all the five WAEC member countries and have won the first, second and third positions at the international level out of a total number of 1,880,666 candidates, making Ghana the proud recipient of all three prizes.
Ghana tops six years in a row
The feat means that Ghana has for the past six years produced the Overall Best candidates in the WASSCE, also written by students from Nigeria, Liberia, The Gambia and Sierra Leone.
Jochebed Adwoa Sutherland and Audrey Emefa Awuttey, both former students of Holy Child Senior High School, were the Overall Best and first runner-up the 2017 WASSCE respectively.
Rachel Amaning Kwarteng, a former student of Aburi Girls, was the second runner-up.
All three best students studying at Medical School
All the three best students are currently students at the University of Ghana Medical School.
Jochebed Adwoa Sutherland is Overall Best
Adwoa, the best WASSCE 2017 student wins $8,000 as prize money, a full scholarship from Universal Merchant Bank, and a laptop.
Audrey Emefa Awuttey is first runner-up
Audrey, the second best student, won $600 as prize money from WAEC, GH¢15,000 from Bond Financial Services, and two laptops.
Rachel Amaning Kwarteng is second runner-up
On the other hand, Rachel, third best WASSCE student, won $500 from WAEC, GH¢5,000 from First Banc, and a laptop.
All three, who were also tops in the Ghanaian contest, will be entitled to one year of free medical care.
For the specific programmes category, Jochebed Adwoa Sutherland was the best General Science student. Hazel Asantewaa Kissi-Dankwa of Aburi Girl was the best Business student while Chris Delanyo Yao Ackotia of Achimota School was the best General Arts student.
Head of National Office of the West African Examination Council (WAEC), Very Reverend Sam Nii Nmai Ollennu encouraged students, especially those preparing for the 2018 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), to fly the flag of Ghana high.
He has charged the WASSCE candidates to work extra hard to enable the country to maintain its hold on the top spot of the WAEC International Awards, presented to candidates who excel in the WASSCE, and continue to make Ghana the shining star in Africa.
Speaking at the council’s 2017 WASSCE distinction awards ceremony in Accra, Reverend Ollennu, giving the criterion for the awards, explained that for a candidate to be considered for the award, the person must have obtained eight grade ‘A1s’.
He indicated that no candidate from the Visual Arts and Home Economics programme obtained eight grade ‘A1s’ in the 2017 WASSCE.
With the analysis of the results for the 2017 WASSCE for school candidates, he said with the exception of social studies, candidates performed better in the core subjects than they did in 2017.
He urged students to focus on their studies and not rely on fake question papers, which mislead them to perform abysmally in their examinations
The Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, in his remarks, congratulated the award winners and urged them to work even harder in subsequent examinations.
He reiterated that government is introducing major reforms to enhance technical and vocational training as a vital springboard for Ghana’s industrialisation drive.
Government, he added, continues to drive these reforms with the objective of producing dedicated skilled and confident workforce with global competencies.
“This is a viable way in which we can put this country on a path to progress and economic development,” and called on all stakeholders, including WAEC, to join hands in the pursuit these reforms.
He commended WAEC for being the most understanding, co-operative and supportive among all the agencies and departments his ministry has been working with.
Last year, WASSCE was conducted for 289,210 candidates in Ghana. The number consisted of 147,591 males and 141,619 females.
The candidates were from 916 schools, and include 47 visually impaired candidates and 124 hearing impaired candidates.
The total number was an increase of 5.45% over the 2016 candidature of 274,262.
Out of the number that sat for the 2017 examination, 228 candidates met the criterion for the awards, that is to say, 228 candidates in Ghana obtained eight grade ‘A1s’.