The Vice-Chancellor Lectures Participants on Afroscholar at CUTWET
The Vice-Chancellor, Covenant University, Professor Charles Ayo has urged African universities to come together to enhance collaboration so as to bring about great improvement to the level of African university education and gain its place among the world-class universities.
The Vice-Chancellor stated this at the 1st Covenant University Training and Workshop on Education Technology (CUTWET), while making his presentation on the topic “Re-Inventing High Education learning experience with social media platforms (Afroscholar)”.
Professor Ayo spoke on the attribute peculiar to world reputable universities. According to him, world-class universities are academic institutions committed to creating and disseminating knowledge in a range of disciplines, delivering elite education at all fields which will serve national needs, and furthering the international public good. He added that world-class universities are known to be solution providers, knowledge creators and nation builders.
He also took time to outline what the host, Covenant University, stands for: its Mission, Vision, core values and most importantly, the steps being taken towards the fulfillment of the target Vision 10:2022 (1 of 10 in 10). He also spoke on the launching of telemedicine which was done during convocation, e-health system, and the Afroscholar, which is in progress. All these, he said, are some innovative programmes run in Covenant University to contribute to the development of the education system in Nigeria and Africa.
Speaking on the essence of the Afroscholar, the Vice-Chancellor explained it would afford individuals from any part of the world to gather any information needed. He added that “Work is in progress towards having a one stop shop for African scholars and researchers such that anytime there is a down time within the academic community, we have a site where there are lecture materials from Nigerian universities and African universities as a whole, where individuals can log on to and access these materials free”. This will further help institutions that embark on strike so that even by the time they resume, the students would not have lost anything.
“We are simply talking about a social media innovation platform for academic, students, industrial experts, as well as employers to share resources, learn across borders, connect socially and collaborate on impact focused projects”, he said.
Using the words of the Chancellor, Dr. David Oyedepo that “Higher institutions in Africa must begin to solve the problems of Africa”, Professor Ayo said it was not surprising what had been witnessed recently among Nigeria and several African nations that were largely dependent on foreign solutions for local problem. That, he said, had to come to an end.
He noted that there is need to have scholars without borders; those that are not restricted to what their respective institutions offer, rather, whatever is available elsewhere. According to him, this has been discussed at different fora at international conferences to see how other Africans, friends of Africans and Africans in the diaspora can begin to see how to make their contributions.
Professor Ayo informed the participants that in order to attain the feats of other world-class universities, currently, there are plans to have a central learning hub for all scholars in Africa. He also stressed that looking at the list of world-class universities, it is not surprising that most African universities are not able to compete on the international platform. This, he said, is a pointer to the quality of education being offered, a reflection of the happenings in the continent and also a sign of over dependence on foreign aid. “Therefore, the objective is to contribute to learning and development in Africa by enabling mutual sharing of resources and collaborations. It will also facilitate project based learning, to be supported by stakeholders in education”, he reiterated.