President Uhuru Kenyatta and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta have launched a unique mentorship project that will benefit bright pupils from across the country.The project known as Pupils Reward Scheme (PURES) was initiated by the President to motivate pupils to work hard in their studies and instil in them a sense of discipline, direction and patriotism.Through the project – the first of its kind in the country – beneficiaries will be facilitated to visit State House to interact with the President and the First Lady.Speaking during the launch, President Kenyatta said the main objective of the project is to inculcate the spirit of service which has become rare in the Kenyan leadership and community at large.He said the project enabled young people to experience what it takes to be in government leadership and to offer services.The President observed that the negative values in the society have largely to do with leaders who have not exhibited the spirit of selflessness, service and sharing amongst the youth.The President said the programme will cultivate a desire amongst the youth to work hard to achieve the best and also aspire to get into public leadership.The first batch of beneficiaries comprised of 25 boys and 23 girls from all counties who excelled in their Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCPE) exams last year. The students were accompanied by their teachers.The First Lady said the project signifies the President’s desire to mentor the younger generation.
Playing in front of an unfriendly crowd, the No. 5 USC men’s tennis team (9-1, 0-0) began another winning streak by defeating Pepperdine (3-3, 0-0) 6-1.Fast start · Sophomore Daniel Nguyen paired with Steve Johnson to capture an 8-5 doubles victory, the first win of the day against Pepperdine. – Gary Fung | Daily Trojan The Waves were motivated to play the formerly top-ranked Trojans on their home court, and their supporters encouraged the home team loudly and passionately.“[Pepperdine] had a really good environment here, with many fans yelling at the players,” USC coach Peter Smith, who coached the Waves from 1998-2002, said. “You really have to earn everything you get.”Even with the strong showing, the home-team support was not enough to overcome the Trojans’ strong performance.Sophomores Steve Johnson and Daniel Nguyen started off the doubles portion with an 8-5 victory over their opponents, senior Bassam Beidas and sophomore Hugh Clarke.In winning the doubles point, the newly ranked No. 30 duo of juniors Jaak Poldma and Peter Lucassen continued to display exceptional tennis. They extended their doubles win streak to seven matches with an 8-4 win.The Trojans quickly asserted themselves during the singles portion, with Lucassen adding to the Trojan tally with a 6-1, 6-2 defeat of No. 115 freshman Finn Tearney.No. 27 senior Robert Farah quickly followed with a dominating performance of two-time All-American No. 44 Beidas 6-2, 6-3.No. 68 Poldma sealed the team victory, cruising to a 6-4, 6-1 win after overcoming an inconsistent start.In a compelling match, No. 1 sophomore Steve Johnson seemingly had victory in hand over sophomore Alex Llompart, winning the first set 6-1. During the second set, Llompart kept the crowd energized, winning several crucial break points and countering Johnson on some extended rallies. Johnson survived the effort and claimed the deciding second set, 7-5.“Llompart is a great competitor,” Smith said. “Steve just has to do a better job to close him out.”Play continued as sophomore Daniel Nguyen lost a back-and-forth three-set match, falling 4-6, 6-1, 0-1 (10-4).Sophomore Matt Kecki finished out the match winning his fifth straight singles match 6-3, 6-3 over sophomore Daniel Moss.USC responded well to its first true road test at a crucial juncture of its season.The Trojans will have one more home match against San Diego State on Tuesday before starting Pac-10 conference play with three away matches.Gaining confidence against a quality opponent and having to tune out the partisan crowd including several highly audible hecklers will help the handle the slate of conference matches.Lucassen and Poldma have stood out recently, meshing well in doubles. Both have shined as individuals.“They have turned it on as of late, and both have been playing great,” Smith said in describing the juniors’ latest performances.Although USC displayed some dominant tennis, some flaws were still evident.Farah and freshman JT Sundling were not able to close out a match in which they led five games to three, and which would eventually settle in a tiebreaker.In that tiebreaker, they were unable to convert three match points, eventually losing to Llompart and Tearney.“It was not perfect, but it was a good result for us,” Smith said.