From all indications, the transition programme for a new administration in the 56-year-old University of Lagos, Akoka (UNILAG) has been concluded. The 12th Vice Chancellor, Prof Oluwatoyin Ogundipe has settled down for business.
The VC who assumed office on Monday, November 11, 2017 hit the ground running. Ogundipe’s actions and body language suggest he is prepared for the job and requires the support of staff and students to accomplish the task ahead.
As part of his efforts to achieve results and reposition UNILAG, The Education Report gathered that Prof Ogundipe met with the four staff unions, students’ leaders and Senate in November 2017, where he sold his vision and mission to them. He solicited for their cooperation to accomplish it.
Sounding confident when he addressed newsmen on Tuesday, January 16, Ogundipe stressed that with the support of staff, students’ and other stakeholders, his administration will take UNILAG to the next level even as the VC revealed how he will tackle the ‘banana peel’ that might crop up in the course of running the affairs of the institution.
Prof Ogundipe described UNILAG as a big establishment that deserves better ranking from the global rating of universities. “We are lucky that the foundation laid by the past vice chancellors is strong enough to take us to where we hope to be and which is to gain global recognition to solve local and international problems.”
He said under his administration, UNILAG will witness change of direction because “we look at branding and brand equity of the university and all that will make UNILAG sustain its position as a university of first choice. We want to open the windows to solving local problems through researches.”
“Within the next one year, we hope to focus on key areas to improve relevance, welfarism, ranking, research, entrepreneurship and branding. We will encourage our colleagues to be more creative and innovative.
I must add that I am blessed with a team that anyone could be proud of. From the Deputy VC to the Registrar, Directors, Deans, Head of Departments and union leaders, we are working together as a team to achieve smooth operation and attain academic excellence and global ranking.”
In a 16-page document that itemized his vision and mission titled: My UNILAG strategy, Prof Ogundipe said his vision is “a UNILAG that is first among equals, producing graduates that are locally relevant, globally competitive and are able to advance our visibility as a research and innovation-driven institution.”
For his mission he vowed: “To build the spirit of collectivism and value reorientation in advancing total human capital and infrastructure development befitting of a 21st Century, globally competitive university.”
The vision divided into six parts spelt out what the VC will accomplish in five years and Ogundipe promised to achieve the vision at the end of his administration.