‘Please, don’t expel any student’
From Clement Adeyi, Osogbo
Prof. Ekundayo Alao, Vice Chancellor, Adeleke University, Ede, Osun State, says he is not in support of President Muhammadu Buhari’s directive to Vice Chancellors to expel students with less than 0.5 CGPA.
He warned that some of them could lose self-esteem and become wayward and irresponsible citizens that might become dangerous to themselves, the family and the society. He stressed that expelling such students would also deny them the opportunity of realizing their talents and potentialities in other areas of relevant knowledge and skills outside academics. According to him, if certain students were not sound in academics, it does not mean that they might not be sound in other skills in entrepreneurship, vocations and trades.
According to him, Adeleke University has a policy of encouraging students who are academically bankrupt to realize their talents and skills in other areas outside academics. “We engage our guidance counsellors who do this. We invite their parents to sit with the counsellors to identify their problems and responsible factors. Then they try to find out their areas of interest in trades, vocations or entrepreneurs with a view to helping them to go into any of these,” he explained. “Some of them could become good farmers, electricians, furniture makers, carpenters, tailors, traders, fashion designers, caterers, bricklayers, mechanics, drivers, vulcanisers, welders among others.”
Prof. Alao said that it was not compulsory for everybody to go to university, obtain degree and become a scholar. But Prof. Labode Popoola, Vice Chancellor, Osun State University (UNIOSUN), does not see anything wrong in expelling such students, stressing that it has been in the university system that any student that falls below the standard academic performance is asked to withdraw for their own good.
He informed that withdrawing such students is not a death sentence, adding that they could be advised to re-sit UTME and seek admission into other institutions where they are likely to do well. According to him, various factors could be responsible for their poor performance in a given university, for instance, some of them could be late starters, or they could find the university setting strange at the beginning and find it difficult to settle down. “But when they find themselves in another university, they could do well.” He cited instances where such students changed school, did well and became professors.