Education

TetFund relies on innovation to accelerate national development

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TetFund relies on innovation to accelerate national development

By Chinyere Nwachukwu

Higher Education Trust Fund (TETFund ) executive secretary Professor Suleiman Bogoro says there is a need to nationalize innovation and technology to accelerate national development if needed.

Bogoro said this during a speech on Thursday at the Seventh Annual Conference of the School of Postgraduate Studies (2019/2020) at the University of Lagos (UNILAG).

According to him, the mileage achieved today by the biggest economies is linked to the huge investments in technology and innovations.

“We need to think and act quickly by investing in our universities and other higher education institutions in this direction.

“If we are to do it right, the frustrations that have hung over our institutions, especially universities, will disappear.

“For our part, we will continue to support research and innovations in our higher education institutions because it is the engine of national development,” he said.

The executive secretary lamented that the traditional window of funding credits for the country’s public universities has failed the nation.

Bogoro noted that for universities to effectively fulfill their teaching, research and community development mandate, increased funding is needed.

“The decline in income in the country has posed a serious threat to these institutions and, therefore, underlines the need for us to do more to stimulate and support research and development.

“The innovative out-of-the-box option of funding our public universities, as negotiated and secured by the Union of University Academic Staff, after four painful years of negotiation, is seen as the saving grace in sustainability and improvement. the ranking of our universities. “Most of the interventions carried out so far in our higher education institutions, as can be seen in universities, polytechnics and colleges, have been carried out by TETFund. “Having said that too, I will say that there is also a need to consolidate the content components of these institutions from around 15 percent to 33 percent,” he said. According to him, after the commitment of huge intervention funds from Tetfund in improving basic physical infrastructure in these public universities and in consultation with relevant stakeholders, there may be a paradigm shift from physical structures towards mostly content components. He noted that areas such as research, training and development of academic staff, library development and other areas could also be considered.

The boss of TETFund, who was the guest speaker, praised UNILAG for its research efforts, noting that it has rightly earned its place as one of Africa’s best in this space.

“The University of Lagos is the top performer in the National Research Fund grant. They have been very persistent and I want to say that the quality of leadership at this university made it all possible.

“It takes a serious scholar to believe in research and to go forward to get grants. We will continue to support targeted leadership in universities, polytechnics and higher education institutions, ”Bogoro said.

Earlier in his speech, the Vice-Chancellor of UNILAG, Professor Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, said that the first goal of the establishment was offer university and research programs.

Ogundipe noted that these programs were aimed at responding to high level knowledge needs, skills and capacity development in Nigeria and the world in general.

He said the school has since grown in leaps and bounds with more than 15,000 students enrolled in its various programs for the session.

According to him, of this figure, more than 8,000 students are should graduate at the next cinvocation ceremony in July.

“This transforms our institution into a postgraduate university in line with federal government expectations first generation universities.

No doubtfinancing in Nigeria is a daunting task. He Imajor factor in the recurring decimal of Actions and the closing of our ivory towers. He tasked education administrators with developing strategies to generate additional funds.

Ppursuit of qualitative education at postgraduate level remains a financial burden that collectively requires responsibility of all stakeholders. This is a chase this the TET funds has demonstrated.

“Let me notice that the TET funds has been of immense benefit to speakers, researchers and graduate students at University from Lagos.

“He has provided and maintained some facilities for us. A typical example is the University Scholars’ Suites, which has been very helpful in accommodating visiting scholars to the university.

“This has help our partnerships and our Research and training efforts, with co-institutions in Nigeria and abroad among other benefits, ”Ogundipe said.

He added that rrecently, TET funds signed a memorandum of understanding with the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) which would train 17 academic staff the UNILAG nominees out of the country.

“The University from Lagos was selected as a Vvirtualub for the program, ”he said.

In his address, President of the occasion, Dr Ernest Ndukwe stressed the need to the private sector and educational institutions to work together for mutual benefit.

“It’s when private sector practitioners recognize the importance and benefits of research that they fund research,” he said.

According to Ndukwe, who is also the Managing Director of MTN Nigeria, innovation is directly linked to the adequacy of its available skilled labor resources.

“This is why the government and the public sector and other international funding bodies and some private organizations traditionally fund education and research,” he added.

He however said universities should look for ways to expand other research funding opportunities due to dwindling government resources in recent times

Earlier, the dean of the university’s School of Graduate Studies, Prof. Alabi Soneye, said that while higher education remains a primary source of knowledge, qualitative research remains the real tool for development and advancement. of the society.

According to him, the mirage of challenges that haunt sustainable development may not be hastily ended if insufficient funding continues to hamper quality higher education and in-depth research. (NAA)

(NAN)

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