By Adetunji Ayobrown
Nigerian academics have risen up to the occasion in tackling challenges bedevilling the country in the area of insecurity.
Stamping its name on the global prominence of academic excellence and reputation, University of Ilorin has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Nigerian Army, in the area of support research and development of ballistic composites.
The institution’s Vice Chancellor Prof. Sulyman Age AbdulKareem, disclosed this while speaking on Monday at a press conference marking the commencement of the 36th Convocation ceremony of the university, which would be held on Saturday.
Prof. Age said, with visionary initiatives, the institution has been propelled and ranked among world best universities known for excellence, learning, probity and service to humanity.
He said with a passionate drive and a reputable force called the Team Unilorin, the university has been channeled on a course of becoming more reputable for research outputs that can change the world.
AbdulKareem said, through promotion of local content development which includes the production of bullets, bulletproof vests and armoured vehicles all of which are things the institution can produce with already available resources.
He further said that, “beyond research, the institution has the capacity to mould bullets and its proof vests in quality and quantity as they may be required by the Nigerian army for their operations.
“One of our greatest achievements in the 2019/2020 academic session was the agreement consummated and signed with the Nigerian Army to support research development of ballistic composites and in the promotion of local content development.
“For protective purpose, which include military vehicles, frequency jamming equipment which can be used in tackling radio frequency used in enhancing crime as part of curtailing insurgency ravaging many parts of the country, many items are needed by the security agencies in combating crime which we can manufacture and produce locally”, The Professor assured.
He said the institution is mettle on the global stage, as the University emerged as the winner of Global Competition in Global Artificial Intelligence (AI) anchored by Scale Early, Rapid and Securely (SERS) of Carleton University, Canada.
Ranked second best in the country and second to none as the most subscribed university and institution with the highest number of foreign students in the out gone session, Prof. Age spelt out many achievements of the institution
The institution was nominated for the prestigious global recognition for the top 100 Achievements Award, by International Achievement Forum, United Kingdom. With other many national awards, as one of the 20 universities with most employed graduates in Nigeria.
And despite all odds which include COVID-19 and Academic Staff Union of University (ASUU)’s strike, the institution graduated about eleven thousand students in the last session.
He tagged the 2019/2020 academic session, as the year of consolidation, saying that 10,922 students would become graduates at the 36th convocation ceremony of the institution among which, 180 are of First-Class category.
Age also noted that the Institution adopting the virtual classroom and using a blended learning model, the 2020/2021 session was started after the last session was completed uninterruptedly.
“Consolidating in strength and pride, the institution is now the academic hub of discovery, learning and innovation,” Prof said.
Other activities and events as part of the ceremony heralding the convocation ceremony includes, Convocation Lecture entitled “Tertiary Education and the future of Nigeria” is to be delivered.
Also, the Convocation play, entitled ‘Aadoye’ (No Secret Anywhere), a South African Dance Interpretation by Steve James is also scheduled as part of the events lined up for the weeklong ceremony.
By Adetunji Ayobrown