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|Nigeria Educational System Has Been Lagging Behind – OAU Vc-elect by Microflux(m): 4:13pm On May 21, 2017|
ScholarZine News Agency took a journey to the Vice-chancellor personal apartment for an interview with the Vice-chancellor elect on various topical issues. A 5-man team including Olukanni Olutola, Ajisegiri Ayodele, Shittu Aminah, Israel Dara Sobaloju, Adeoye Ibukunoluwa discussed both issues that concerns the university and the world at large. Topic ranging from politics, leadership and books.
He was recently elected to the position by the governing council led by Prof Yemi Ogunbiyi. Interview below.
The ScholarZine Team with the Vice-chancellor – From the Left Ajisegiri Ayodele, Shittu Aminah, Prof Eyitope Ogunbodede, Adeoye Ibukunoluwa, Olukanni Olutola, Israel Dara Sobaloju.
Can we Meet you sir?
Am Professor Eyitope Ogunbodede, I am a professor of preventive and community dentistry, I joined this university as a member of staff in 1987, but became A student Of this Prestigious university In the Year 1977. I have been on campus for about 40 years. I have had the privilege of working in Africa, Europe as Well as the United States. I have also served in various capacities on this campus. Let me also Say that, During the Period of Time in which I was a Student, I was a very active member of the Students’ Union. I Was also a member of the Association of Campus Journalist(ACJ). Back then, we used to publish a magazine “The Vigo” which Served To Point Out (And then Hopefully Correct) Certain Errors committed by the students and staff. As an alumnus of this university, I have always been passionate about happenings in the university.
Can we know a little of your educational background?
I attended a public primary school in my home town – Owo in Ondo state – Methodist primary school, where I got the best of education at that level. It saddens my heart when I see the state of the School now. I furthered my secondary school Education in Owo high school – Late Pa. Adekunle Ajasin primary school. I came to OAU to study dentistry and then went to do my Masters in public health in university of Lagos, then I went to UK where I studied For A diploma in public health at university college London. I did the fellowship of Dental Surgeons in Ireland. Also, I am a fellow of the Aria college in London. I have a PhD in the university of western cape. I have schooled both In Africa And Europe. I have also been a visiting professor to university of Benin-quarter strand also know as VET. In 2012/2013, I was a visiting professor in the prestigious Harvard University. I presently serve in the international council for dental research, A Twelve-Membered Team.
Has been a Vice-chancellor ever been in your goals?
My ambition as an undergraduate was just to have a B.sc, and then become a practicing dentist. I have never thought of been a dean, a professor or even a Vice-chancellor. Still, In contributing one’s quota to national development, along the line, it is not unprecedented to Find people Who Find You Capable, And therefore, Urge you to occupy certain positions. That makes life easier for you. But six, seven years ago, when the sit of the Vice-chancellor became vacant after Professor Faborode’s time, I applied at that time, but was not appointed. This time, God in his infinite mercy made it possible. It is something you need to work towards, but not too definite about.
According to our research sir, (Statistics Collated By the Scholarzine Team) we discovered that OAU can only provide accommodation for just 9,000 – 10,000 students out of almost 32,000 full-time students of the university and this has led to exploitation amidst the students (With Bedspace issues here And there). What is your take on this and how do you intend to help the situation?
Am not yet in office, but when I assume the office, I will have better information on this. But one thing is certain, I am not satisfied with the level of accommodation Present on this Campus. In fact, no one is. I know the current administration is working towards that. I must give you an example, I went to a hall of residence recently And noticed students spreading their clothes on the grass, And For A While couldn’t figure out Why. Those are simple instances, and there are some simple measures that can be put in place, like the issue of Bedspace selling you mentioned, they are administrative cases that can be sorted out. But I plan to focus on students accommodation as a priority, we have read a lot of articles in the paper concerning that. I want to make it inclusive, using a very holistic approach.
There has been cases of theft, and non-students staying in halls of residence, what do you think can be done to avoid such occurrences in our Halls of residence?
The major issue has to do with community vigilance. I believe every room in our halls of residence are allocated, which means these people stay with students – who are owners of Bedspaces. This was not the case many years ago, but in a case of overpopulation such cases are inevitable. But I can say our security on this campus is very robust. I know we have Hall officers and rules and regulations that guide the conduct of students in the halls of residence. The problem can be solved if we all agree to solve it. For me, the issue of security must not be compromised.
OAU as one of the best university in Nigeria, should boast of nice infrastructures, but reverse is the case in this dispensation – we have dilapidated buildings and laboratory equipment, what can be done to bring back the past glory?
I must commend the present administration for the present work they are doing on the campus, we have had a lot of improvements. We will solicit support of individuals, government and the council of the university – we presently have a council that is progressive. We need the full data to know the steps to take. When we get there we will have that, and set out to work. Prof Eyitope Ogunbodede.
We believe you are interested in the youths. Presently a 39-year old Macron Emmanuel became the president of France. This is viewed to be impossible in our Nation. What is your view about this?
The future of this nation belongs to the youths and that is where education becomes crucial. We need to Revitalise, Take Careful Inspection of Our Curriculum Across All Educational Institutions. Even From the Grassroot. As of today, the kind of curricular we have is not supportive of youth leadership. I will love to see to a change in the curriculum, so that graduates will be able to support themselves even after graduation, it is then they can support the nation. The youth are the vanguard of change, and they must be ready. We need to give you – youths a space to ventilate your ideas. But our Educational system has not been up and doing towards that at all levels. Universities don’t have plans, and that is what will be germane in my leadership – student inclusiveness.
We believe, from our research that the use of Visitors Book had once been in use in this university for security consciousness. Do you wish to revive such?
Yes, it’s true. Things were better than this in the past years. No one can just move in and out of our halls when I was a students. Public address systems were used then to students Well Informed About Visits. But soon everything declined to extinction. I have lived in a lot of foreign hostels – in Harvard and some others. The level we operate is far below. If we intend to bring foreign students into our university, we need to conform. It is something that you may think might not be critical, but it really is. But all these changes will require the cooperation of the students.
You have been clamouring on students inclusiveness in your leadership, how do you plan to achieve this?
We have more students than members of staff. Also, students are Never In Short of progressive ideas. I am going to run an open administration in the sense that you will gain free access to my office, and I will enjoin all stakeholders to do the same. One thing I will do is that there will be competitions where students will be able to showcase their ideas, and then Be compensated. When I was in Harvard, there was such, which at a time had almost 350 business ideas Generated. In Fact, Facebook was part of them. If our students are given the right atmosphere, I believe they will perform better.
Our teaching and research farm has depreciated over the years. How do you think it can be revived?
If we develop agriculture in this school, it will increase the accessibility of the course. We have the resources, we just need to make a plan for all to see. We need to improve the agricultural plan of our university. Everything will soon change. My own idea is that you don’t need to be a student of Agriculture to benefit from the faculty. When it’s fully revived, students from other department will benefit from it.
The power supply on our campus has been a bone of contention over the Years, what can be done to salvage this situation?
The issue is a national problem, we have once enjoyed a great power supply, but it is no longer so. We will improve on it in years to come.
Your final words sir?
We must know that as a university, we should set the pace for the nation. Anything you need in any modern community is here. We need to tell the government our ideas, not just criticize them. We can generate our power supply. We should be able to tell the nation that we have what they need. Whatever we want to see in the nation, let us practise it first in our university. Then we will tell the government it has tenability in our school and it has possibilities to thrive. This will be my approach. We should make our school a model for the nation. I really appreciate your efforts.
Thank you for your time sir.
|Re: Nigeria Educational System Has Been Lagging Behind – OAU Vc-elect by Homeboiy: 4:15pm On May 21, 2017|
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