Wike gave the advice at the 43rd Annual Inter-House Sports Competition of the Federal Science and Technical College, Yaba, Lagos.
The minister, who was represented on the occasion by Mrs Mobolaji Borha of the Federal Inspectorate of Education, Lagos, said that Nigeria would only be great when the students were determined and focused.
He said that sports, like education, were veritable tools that could be used in realising the transformation agenda of the current administration and, therefore, must be taken seriously.
“The Federal Ministry of Education in support of government’s transformation agenda will continue to promote all-round development of our students at all levels of education in the country.
“This is in order to produce skilled individuals with sound minds and sound bodies and one of the ways in achieving this is through sports and qualitative education.
“As we already know, sports create veritable avenue for students to discover their hidden talents.
“Sports the world over today is no longer a pastime venture as it has become big business and now brings national and international recognition to those who give it the seriousness it deserves.”
He said that students should learn from the Golden Eaglets who recently won the 2013 FIFA Under -17 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
“They had channelled their energies to achieving greatness and recognition for our beloved country and I know you too can do it if you only try.”
The minister charged the students to put in their best performances in the competition and set new records that would propel them into representing the country in global events in future.
The Principal of the college, Mrs Magdalene Nwankwo, called on the Federal Government to urgently recruit additional teachers, who would take care of core subjects like mathematics and French.
She said that the institution had the largest number of student population amongst the 104 Unity Colleges in the country.
Nwankwo said the school had a student population of 3,470 with over 40 subjects, comprising science and technical arms.
She said the recruitment of more teachers would ensure effective service delivery in core subjects like technical drawing and computer science.
“ The curriculum is broad-based, resulting in the dire need for large number of experienced and qualified teachers.
“We know that government has been doing its best in this regard but I wish to appeal for more of the teachers, for us to be able to drive and sustain the academic excellence we have always been known for,” she said. (LEADERSHIP)