Stakeholders harp on skill acquisition for graduates

Joseph Ayo Babalola University

Joseph Ayo Babalola University

For Nigeria to tackle the menace of high unemployment among her vibrant youth population and chart a new course of development for a depressed economy, stakeholders who gathered at the Joseph Ayo Babalola University (JABU), Ikeji-Arakeji, have called for a shift in the country’s educational focus to embrace entrepreneurship.

The stakeholders including management and visitors to the university’s 7th convocation ceremony last weekend, urged those in charge of Nigeria’s education sector to take a cue from JABU and work towards producing self-dependent graduates that could contribute to the growth of the country’s economy.

The institution which is noted for its novel voyage into entrepreneurship programme that is aimed at producing graduates with at least a vocational training for self-reliance, is already entering into partnership with governmental bodies and institutions on youth training.

In his address at the ceremony which also marked the university’s tenth year anniversary, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sola Fajana announced new milestones in JABU’s voyage into entrepreneurship which included a partnership with the Federal Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs in the training of youths from the restive Niger Delta region of Nigeria.

Fajana also told the rich gathering of eminent personalities, which included the governor of Osun State, Rauf Aregbesola who was represented by his Deputy, Mrs. Titilayo Laoye-Tomori and representatives of several universities, that JABU has also started increasing the number of partnerships with “industries and institutions to better leverage our resources across the university.”

Three eminent Nigerians, Oba Enitan Adeyeye Ogunwusi, the Ooni of Ile-Ife, Pastor Caxton Segun Fasuyi, the vice-Chairman of the institution’s Governing Council and Mr. Babatope Michael Agbeyo, Chairman of Cornfield Group, who were conferred with honorary Doctorate Degrees of the university, also laid emphasis on opening a new vista of social and economic development for Nigeria.

According to Oba Ogunwusi who spoke on behalf of the recipients, self-reliance is the way for youths to go in a depressed economy as it is the only panacea that can reduce reliance on a fragile state structure that can hardly sustain those who are already engaged.

He urged the youths, hundreds of who gathered at the Oba Oladele Olashore Auditorium venue of the convocation ceremony, to learn from his personal story, which saw him, by a dint of hard work, becoming a successful employer of labour.

His words, “when I graduated, I decided I was not going to work for anybody but myself. I started on my own and rose to become the owner of a business that has 2,500 direct employments and over 10,000 indirect ones. The way to success is in your determination to succeed, pursue it.”

He also urged the audience, which had a huge presence of Nollywood actors who obviously came as guests of Agbeyo, who was said to have huge investments in the Nigerian film business, to consider having a shot at Nigeria’s creative industry.

The 2017 convocation produced 675 graduates out of which 646 graduated with First Degrees while 29 had higher degrees.Further breakdown showed that 18 got First Class honours, 201 got Second Class Upper Division while 334 got Second Class Lower Division. There were 93 on the list of Third Class.



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