University of Nigeria, Nsukka Has Awarded a total of 480 PhD’s to Graduates During the 48th Convocation Ceremony Held on December 1st, 2018.
The Vice-Chancellor of the University, Professor Benjamin Ozumba, said in his speech at the 48th Convocation ceremony of the university that the significant increase in the number of postgraduate degrees by the university was a reflection of the deliberate response to the mandate given to first generation universities to increase their enrolment of postgraduate students.
Professor Ozumba stated that among the recent developments n the university was the establishment of the Environment for Development (EfD) Centre, to serve as a Research and Environment Policy Research Centre (REPRC) to be fully funded by Swedish International DevelopmentAgency (SIDA).
He added UNN had emerged successful in the competition among 132 applications from other universities in the country, to host Africa Centre of Excellence on Sustainable Power and Energy Development (ACESPED). He said that as part of efforts towards revitalizing and internationalising the university, the university recently hosted some partners from its mentoring institution, the Michigan State University, USAand that UNN had been admitted into the Alliance for African Partnership (AAP), which had the potential to increase the university’s global recognition in addition to opportunities for research grants.
He said that the long-lasting relationship with Japanese universities was flourishing and the university had expanded its collaborations to institutions in China, which included broadbased collaboration with Chinese Academy of Sciences through exchange of research staff and students in various disciplines. Also, twelve researchers from UNN had been in China for one year and two of the staff had won the Young Scientists Award in China.
The Vice-Chancellor further informed that UNN had established Roar Nigeria Hub, a technology incubation centre where students were guided and supported to develop innovative ideas into business realities.
He said further that the hub had successfully generated over twenty business startups, which were already in the market with potential of recording huge financial returns. According to the vice chancellor, one of the startups known as Arome had designed and developed a drone prototype for the delivery of medical supplies to rural communities, adding that the drone had been billed for international exhibition in Helsinki, Finland.
He also said that the UNN Science Park had been incorporated and a number of companies notably Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing and Japanese company, Mirai Denchi were pioneers of the project, stating that the Science Park also had global recognition as an affiliate of International Association of Science Parks. He stated that UNN standards remained high while its visibility in the global academic space had continued to improve.
On physical facilities, he said that the NLNG Engineering laboratory and the new Social Sciences building had been completed, while the new Bioprocess laboratory, new Sciences Lecture theatre and laboratories funded by Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund), had were near completion. At the Enugu campus, the Arthur Mbanefo ICAN lecture theatre had been completed, while the new medical centre would soon be ready.
To ease accommodation problem at the College of Medicine, ItukuOzalla, a new hostel complex had been completed while old existing hostels had been renovated. He said that other infrastructural amenities had been improved and in some cases provided including water supply and light on all the campuses of the university. He added that concerted efforts were also made to improve security which had kept all forms of social vices at the barest minimum.
Professor Ozumba called for more funding of universities, saying that the financial situation of universities has become increasingly dire and needed urgent attention. He submitted that, “For a first generation and multi-campus university like ours, the situation is made worse by the huge cost of maintaining ageing infrastructure and providing municipal services. I am truly hopeful that the ongoing discussions between the federal government, Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU) and other stakeholders will lead to a lasting solution to the problem of funding of our universities”.
In his speech, the Chancellor, the Ooni of Ife, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi, said that UNN had been a receptacle of exceptional teaching and learning as well as fostering desirable unity and true nationality, while restoring the dignity of man. He said that as the world was progressing fast into knowledge-based economics, humans were highly valued by what their brains could offer and not parameters which bred isolation and separation. He said that UNN in its commitment to community development and human advancement had continued to produce first class academics and also identifies as well as honoured achievers who had impacted humanity and the society with their invaluable contributions.
He said that the university would continue to welcome constructive ideas and contributions that would perpetuate and project its competence, resourcefulness as well as consolidate global recognition. One of the highpoints of the convocation was the elevation of eleven retired Professors of the university to Emeritus Professors among whom was Professor Uche Azikiwe, the wife of former President of Nigeria and Founder of the university, Dr. Nnamdi Azikiwe.
The event also featured conferment of honorary degrees to three distinguished personalities for their outstanding performances in socio-economic development of the society and service to humanity. They included the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Access Bank; Mr. Herbert Wigwe, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Dozzy Group; Sir Daniel C h u k w u d o z i e a n d f o r m e r Executive Secretary of Petroleum Products Pricing and Regulatory Agency (PPPRA), Mr. Reginald Chika Stanley. A staff of the National Universities Commission, Dr. Cletus Aadona Lanshima was among the graduands awarded with Doctorate degree in Criminology and Criminal Justice.