CU Hosts Carnegie African Diaspora Scholars
Covenant University, today, January 19, 2015, welcomed two scholars of the Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Programme, from the United States of America.
The scholars, Professor Tokunbo Ogunfunmi, a specialist in Electrical Engineering, from Santa Clara University, and Professor Peyibomi Soyinka-Airewele, a specialist in International and Comparative Politics, from Ithaca College, New York, were hosted at the Vice Chancellors’ conference room in Canaan Land, Ota.
In his remarks at the event, the Vice Chancellor, Professor Charles Ayo, appreciated them for coming to Covenant University, noting that their visit coincided with the institutions’ vision “1 of 10-in-10.”
The Vice Chancellor further stated, “We have our objectives clearly set, we have 8-point agenda that we are running with, and with your presence - particularly looking at one of the objectives, which is internationalization - we will make a lot of progress. We know in the ranking of Universities globally, there is need for an appreciable percentage of international scholars, as well as students, so we are working hard at it.”
“On an annual basis, we have our academic calendar run from August to December, for the first semester, and January to May, for the second semester, so that we have June and July to appoint a number of visiting scholars from abroad, to interact with our faculty, organize conferences and collaborate in the area of research,” he emphasized.
In her remarks, the Deputy Vice Chancellor, Professor Taiwo Abioye, appreciated the duo for accepting to mentor the Covenant University faculty. She stated that the University Management was glad that its ‘handshake,’ as it were, was accepted by the Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship Programme.
She reiterated, “We are happy to have you and we are expecting wonderful results; and would all be here to celebrate your contributions.”
While making his remarks, the Registrar, Dr. Olumuyiwa Oludayo, stated, “On behalf of the University, I would like to welcome you to Covenant University, trusting that your arrival here would give us a quantum leap towards realising our significant goals, one of which is to have become one of the best ten universities in the world by 2022. We see partnerships in this University as being very vital to achieving set targets. I want to believe that Covenant University is a good platform to discharge some of your abilities and competences as well as give back to Nigeria, having been in the United States for so long.”
In her remarks at the event, the Director of the International Office and Linkages, Dr. Angela Eni, said, “We are very pleased to have both of you. We strongly believe in outstanding Nigerians who are out there, coming home to contribute to what is being done at home to build this nation.”
In her response, Professor Peyibomi Soyinka-Airewele, stated “I cannot adequately express how much I appreciate the opportunity to deepen the relationship between Ithaca College and Covenant University. We will be working on Strategic Studies and Policy programme with the Postgraduate students. We are hoping to produce a very innovative and ground-breaking programme that is really at the edge of what the Continent needs in terms of producing students who have developed the capacities and the skill sets to cope with a very difficult security situation in our world today.”
Professor Soyinka- Airewele elaborated, “I have the opportunity to teach some of the students and also to work with the Department in transforming the programme. I really appreciate this opportunity. It is a mutually beneficial one and our University has benefitted from working with Covenant University. It is a model and an example of what top institutions in Africa are going to look like.”
In his comments, Professor Tokunbo Ogunfunmi, stated, “I am here with two main objectives: one is to fashion a new curriculum and the second objective is to mentor the Postgraduate students. I also want to thank you for the brilliant environment you have here. It is very unique and serene; I think other Universities should imbibe it.”
Others at the event were the immediate past Director of the International Office & Linkages, Dr. Sheriff Folarin; the Director, Media and Corporate Affairs, Dr. Lanre Amodu and other members of the directorate.