Don Stresses Access to Quality Education at CU’s Matriculation Event
A former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Professor Oyewusi Ibidapo-Obe, has charged government at all levels to speedily address the problem of access and quality bedeviling the nation’s education system.
Professor Ibidapo-Obe gave the charge at the 15th Matriculation Ceremony of Covenant University, Ota, Ogun State, where he was the Guest Lecturer and spoke on the topic, ‘Attaining Global Relevance and National Socio-Economic Advancement through Quality Education’.
While he acknowledged the Federal Government’s efforts at increasing access to quality education for teeming seekers of tertiary education, as exemplified by the creation of more federal institutions of higher learning, the erudite professor said there was still more to be done.
The Guest Lecturer, who is also the immediate past Vice-Chancellor of the Federal University, Ndufu-Alike, Ikwo, Ebonyi State, disagreed with the popular notion that the standard of education in the country has fallen, but noted that the standard of measurement around the world is rising. According to him, “Our education is not bad, what is bad is the education system and social infrastructure.”
He advocated some of the challenges affecting the evolvement of an education system that will have global relevance as corruption, poverty, up rise in militancy, poor infrastructure, weak economy, poor leadership, unemployment and insecurity.
He canvassed the need to make government to appreciate the contributions of all private institutions of learning towards national development. “Private institutions are also involved in national development and contribute significantly in an attempt to answer the access question plaguing the nation, and some of them like Covenant University are churning out quality graduates that are contributing to the nation’s growth. So I think private institutions should also benefit from the endowed Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFUND),” he said.
The Chancellor, Covenant University, Dr. David Oyedepo, who presented an address titled, ‘Living the Covenant University Dream: Delivering the Leadership Mandate’, said the greatest challenge facing Africa is that of leadership. However, according to him, Africa cannot continue to lament the problem of leadership but must start proffering solutions to its own unique problems.
Dr. Oyedepo said the establishment of Covenant University was with the intention of creating a revolution in the education landscape of Nigeria, but it will also take a radical regeneration of the mind for the desired change to become real. He posited that sound education is the foundation of any great nation, because anywhere education goes transformation and development accompanies it.
In his welcome address, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. AAA. Atayero, said that the university’s admission exercise and sorting process was a rigorous one as only the very best is good enough for the revolutionary leaders the institution has envisioned. He congratulated the matriculating students, parents and guardians for making the Covenant University their preferred place of learning at the point in time when the university is at the threshold of making history as one of the top 10 leading universities in the world by the year 2022.
Sharing their first semester experiences in Covenant University, some of the students said it had been a new learning curve for them as they had made a lot of adjustments in the way they approached learning. According to Olutola Moyinoluwa, a freshman in the Department of Electrical and Electronics Engineering, he has been able to adjust fast to the system. That included how to conduct himself and abide by rules and regulations governing students’ day-to-day life on campus. “Punctuality is major in all aspect of our activities and late coming is not tolerated,” he added.
Chinwenwa Orji, a student of Management and Information Science, said she was still trying to adjust to the huge demanding schedule of the university. According to her, “At times, it looks stressful managing tight academic schedules and carrying out my service assignment in the Technical Unit but I am managing well and getting better by the day”.
The Chair, Faculty Support Programme, Dr. Oluwatosin Rotimi, advised the new intakes to have a reset in time management, knowing fully when to do what, at what time to do it and what comes first. He said the way out was for every student to start having weekly plans, then create a sub-plan for their daily activities.