Fatoumata agrees that while the day itself was a memorable highlight, the runup was, in a word, “Stressful”. “From the outside looking in, solving problems seems easy, presentations look effortless and public speaking seems like no big thing – but, trust me, it was anything but. Sleeplessness nights, thinking till your head hurt and a great amount of effort had to be put in to make our E-fest a success. Adding to the fact that the term was almost over and we were being bombarded with assignments, projects and tests galore, the weeks before E-fest had to be used very wisely,” she adds.

In the end, it was all worth it, agrees Fatoumata: E-fest pushed me outside my comfort zone and had me thinking outside the box, and that’s something I highly appreciate. After going through the process I would encourage future competitors to put their heart and soul into it, as it’s a chance to showcase your ideas to the entire community, get feedback, and build on your idea – and even if you don’t win, to still gain a great amount of knowledge just from participating. The whole process was a way to have us focus on an African problem, something that affects where we come from which to me, is what made E-fest so special.

E-fest wouldn’t have been possible without all the Entrepreneurial Learning teachers who were there to coach through each and every step of the way. Without them I personally do not think any of the teams would have been able to deliver the inspiring, professional presentations they had. They are truly superstars.