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How Nigerian varsities can attain global ranking, by UI VC

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The Vice Chancellor of the University of Ibadan (UI), Prof. Abel Olayinka, yesterday declared that it would be impossible for universities in the country to attain the world ranking level unless issues of funding, infrastructure and capacity in terms of workers and students are properly addressed.

Olayinka subsequently advocated massive injection of funds into the sector by the government and stakeholders, saying this is the only way to revamp tertiary education in the country.

The vice chancellor who spoke in an interview with The Guardian on issues affecting the nation’s universities particularly the challenges of shortfall in allocations and staff salaries, urged well-meaning Nigerians to partner with the government in the area of funding for the institutions.

Olayinka, a professor of Applied Geophysics said our universities, as presently run cannot be ranked among the top institutions in the world. He stated that:” If we want our universities to be world class, then we have a long way to go in terms of resources, talents – both students and staff; internalisation, strategic framework in terms of autonomy, academic freedom and leadership team among others.”

“What does it take to have a world class university? You can classify the variables into three, one is that you need abundant resources, talking about funding whether from the proprietor, like in our own case, federal government, through tuition fees, then from endowments or donations, those are the major sources of funding for federal universities and even for other institutions, there can be donations and the faculty members can also try to apply for grants because it would also strengthen the facilities in the university.

“There is also the need for concentration of talents, in terms of students, staff and internalisation because a university is supposed to be a universe; and then leadership framework. If you have a combination of all these in abundance, then you have a world class university on your hand.”

The vice chancellor also lamented that the environment in most of our tertiary institutions is not conducive for learning, which also affects productivity. He faulted claims of absence of research by lecturers in the university, saying the situation would have been easier for students and the workers if the environment was conducive.



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