Covenant University engages Lancaster University and Birmingham City University in a Taster/Study Abroad program
Eighteen students and three staff members of Covenant University engaged Lancaster University and Birmingham City University, all in the United Kingdom, in a summer Taster/Exchange program which commenced in July 2012
The Taster programme is a rich educational and cultural programme meant to act as a bridge for students who may likely end up in UK based Universities for their postgraduate studies to have a taste of higher education in the UK in the form of a Taster Programme.
The students were exposed to higher education needs in the UK, how to pursue postgraduate programs in the UK as well as have a taste of the rich cultural and geographical values of the United Kingdom. They were taken through both Universities postgraduate curriculum and counselled on relevant programmes of interest and how to secure admission into such competitive programmes. The program also formed a study abroad program for the participating students which was primarily designed to give them an international perspective and expose them to global competencies. The program also exposed the students to the latest issues in their areas of study, thus validating the quality of education they receive in Covenant University.
To achieve the program objectives, the students were given numerous typical classes in a Master’s program as a way of giving them a taste of what they will get when they return back for postgraduate studies. It was also a means of letting them assess the quality of undergraduate program they have received in Covenant University.
The team of 21 was led by the Director, International Office and Linkages, Dr. Nnamdi Ekeanyanwu while the Director, Centre for Learning Resources, Mr. Chris Nkiko and the Deputy Director of CLR, Mrs. Ifeoma Ilo were in the Team to understudy University Libraries in the UK to benchmark best practices and areas to improve in a quest to make the Covenant University Library, popularly referred to as Centre for Learning Resources (CLR) a world class resource centre.
The Librarians in the team visited four solid University Libraries in the UK and spent time understudying their operations and total service delivery to the university community. These Libraries included the largest Library in the whole of the United Kingdom - the British Library located at the heart of London; the University of Lancaster Library; the Birmingham City University Libraries (two in number), and the Aston University Library. The team also secured a gentle man’s agreement that Covenant University could move the relationship with these libraries forward by having exchange arrangement in place whereby the staff of these Libraries could visit and work in each other’s Libraries for agreed period of time for international experience and exposure on both sides.
Other benefits of the program to the UK included international visibility in the locations visited. This is not to talk about the international exposure given to the students
who will in turn let other prospective students know that being in Covenant University offers other benefits beyond good education and certification. So, the program in the long run serves as a good referral system for the kind of students we desire to recruit. In essence, there is a multiplier effect in prospective students’ preference of Covenant University.
We met with the International Officer of both Universities to formalise our relationship. This yielded positive result. A draft MOU is now making round in the relevant offices at the two Universities. The MOU will address most of the benefits of this trip and the relationship which the two universities hope to pursue in the nearest future.
On the lighter side, the students visited some historical/cultural sites and places of significance in the United Kingdom. The London trip was a huge international experience for all the team members as they experienced the London Underground train system.