Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic
Deputy Vice Chancellor Development
The University Librarian
The Provost, College of Medicine
The chairman of Ceremonies Committee
All members of staff here present
Gentlemen of the Press
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen
ADDRESS PRESENTED BY PROFESSOR PATRICK OLADIPO AINA,
VICE-CHANCELLOR, EKITI STATE UNIVERSITY, ADO – EKITI,
AT THE PRESS BRIEFING FOR THE 18TH CONVOCATION CEREMONY
EKITI STATE UNIVERSITY HELD ON TUESDAY, 2 APRIL, 2013
Gentlemen of the Press
It gives me very great pleasure to welcome you all to this Press Briefing. The purpose of this Press Briefing is to inform the whole world about the 18th Convocation Ceremony of Ekiti State University and the activities marking the occasion.
In an occasion as this, it is pertinent to briefly inform you about the University, that is being celebrated by the convocation. Ekiti State University turned 31years old on March 30, 2013. The University is a comprehensive teaching and research public Institution that combines undergraduate, graduate and professional programmes. It is structured into 11 Faculties comprising 51 Departments and academic support units, the College of Medicine and School of Postgraduate Studies with an enrolment of 16,877 full-time, 2,000 sandwich programme students and the last batch of part-time undergraduate students. We are also affiliated with a number of tertiary Institutions in Nigeria. There are 591 academic and 1,390 non-teaching staff in the University from various linguistic and ethnic backgrounds. Since graduating its first batch of students in 1986, the University has produced to date over 50,000 alumni, many of who have distinguished themselves as national and international leaders in their various disciplines.
Since the last Convocation on March 30, 2012, the University has recorded heart-warming accomplishments by the grace of God and with the full support of everyone. It has been a story of optimism and achievement and constant striving that is unique. Yet, the University is looking ahead and exploring new frontiers.
A 5-year Strategic Plan 2013-2018 that will articulate our aspirations and outline the direction that the University would take over the next years to achieve the goal of becoming a world-class University is being developed. During the 2012 calendar year, the University presented 45 programmes in 7 Faculties for accreditation by the National Universities Commission and to the glory of God, all the programmes were accredited and none with failed status.
Our academic staff have been positively engaged and advancing the frontiers of research to meet world-class research benchmarks especially in globally relevant niche areas of renewable energy, food security, biotechnology and peace and conflict studies. Since re-introducing the graduate assistantship programme to increase our doctoral output, a number of our junior academic are in topnotch overseas Universities on various collaborative training programmes leading to doctorate degrees.
Our entire academic programmes are in the process of critical review with new programmes that will enhance the global competitiveness of our products. These new programmes include Distance or Blended Learning, Gender and Development Studies, Forensic Science in Collaboration with Gujarat Forensic Sciences University, India, Theatre and Media Arts, Architecture, and Peace and Conflict Studies.
In terms of municipal infrastructure development, the University apart from being finally connected to the National electric power grid and the establishment of solar power infrastructure as alternative energy source, we aim to nurture and create a range of renewable energy sources – including wind and constructing a small hydroelectric dam on Elemi river for ultimate energy self-sufficiency in the University. Water supply in the University is presently from newly sunk Industrial and several domestic boreholes.
We have undertaken an ambitious physical infrastructure development to complement our research, teaching and learning resources. This includes a new Twin 1,500-seater Lecture Theater; the buildings of the Medical Library, Biochemistry and Pharmacology (funded by the State Government), and Medical Students Hostels nearing completion; on-going construction of four other buildings of the School of Postgraduate Studies, Entrepreneurship Centre, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences and Faculty of Education so also are supply of engineering equipment for the Faculty of Engineering and Laboratory furniture and fittings for the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences. We have commenced the process to turn EKSU to a residential University for students and staff to improve the academic culture through hostels and staff housing developed by Public-Private-Partnership (PPP) arrangement.
Information and Communication Technology (ICT) deployment in the University has also witnessed a substantial leap in the last one year. We are beneficiaries of the National Communications Commission’s (NCC) wireless cloud project to provide broadband internet access to the campus and put the campus on Wi-Fi network. We achieved, for the first time in 2012, a shift from manual to electronic conduct of the PostUTM Examinations. The University recently moved from 79th position to 19th position in the current (February 2013) webometric ranking of Universities in Nigeria and 198th in Africa, indicating the University’s presence on the Web and improvement in the quantum of electronic resources on the WEB site as well as access to such resources; A Team of International Business Machines (IBM) experts visited EKSU for about one month this year, working on IBM’s new Initiative for Sustainable Development through effective use of ICT, functionality of software applications provided by Microsoft and the hardware by Samsung; EKSU is about concluding partnership agreement with GOOGLE Africa on a GOOGLE APPS project which will deliver state of the art e-learning facility and very cheap internet access on campus. Already two of our students have been appointed as GOOGLE ambassadors. The University has commenced a biometric data capture of staff and students to meet up with today’s realities in accurate record keeping with electronic access.
We have been beneficiaries of a number of corporate social responsibility projects, including the donation of N22.3m for the construction of modern Sports Facilities (Lawn Tennis and Basket Ball Courts, Table Tennis) and a University Portal by First Bank Plc; donations of book, journals and endowment of Prizes.
As part of our efforts to reposition the University as a world-class Institution and that will be part of the global creative and innovative intellectual networks, we have established and continued to maintain global partnerships with Universities that represent beacons of good practice internationally, including: University of Nottingham, UK; Texas Southern University, USA; University of Kwazulu Natal, South Africa and Arizona State University, USA.
The governance of the University has effectively put in place measures to ensure security of lives and property and to uphold our core values of integrity, accountability, probity and ethical behavior. There has been quick dispensation of justice in a transparent manner to flagrant and cardinal violation of University laws. All these have restored proper orientation, civility and discipline in the University.
The University is looking ahead and exploring new frontiers of increasing and diversifying Internally Generated Revenue. This process includes codifying of the school fees and other sundry charges to bring about transparency and accountability, commercialization of research products, establishment of commercial ventures and enterprises, business portfolios, consultancy unit, endowments and bequeaths.
The 2013 Convocation
This year’s EKSU Convocation is scheduled for April 2-6, 2013. The event would formalize the graduation of 4,439 students. Of this number, 11 earned First Class Honours degrees, 701 emerged in the Second Class Upper Honours category, 2,695 in Second Class Lower Honours, 970 in Third Class and 62 obtained a Pass degree. Seven hundred and forty eight (748) graduating Postgraduate students comprise 27 PhD, 302 Masters and 419 Post Graduate Diploma. We expect a hitch-free Convocation. I am using this opportunity to warmly invite the public, friends of the university and stakeholders to this year’s Convocation ceremonies. The highlight of the convocation ceremony activities is as follow:
- Tuesday April 2nd: University monthly prayer session, at Main Auditorium
- Thursday April 4th:
University Lecture by His Excellency Dr. John Dramani Mahama, the President of the Republic of Ghana. The topic is: University Governance and Reclaiming the Lost Glory: The Challenges and Possibilities of World Class University in Africa
Turning of Sod of the Institute of Governance’ Building by Dr. John Kayode Fayemi, Governor of Ekiti State;
Vice-Chancellor’s Night Dinner at Archbishop Abiodun Adetiloye Hall, Trade Fair Complex, Ado – Ekiti.
- Friday April 5th: Admission to First Degrees and Award of Prizes
- Saturday, April 6th: Award of Postgraduate Diplomas and Higher Degrees.
Finally, I gratefully acknowledge the support of friends of EKSU, who have supported us in various ways. Once again, I thank you gentlemen of the Press for your coverage of this Press Briefing.
Thank you very much.
Professor Patrick Oladipo Aina
Vice-Chancellor, Ekiti State University