VICE-CHANCELLOR’S REPORT AT THE 58TH MEETING OF THE GOVERNING COUNCIL ON SATURDAY, 19TH MARCH, 2016.

VICE-CHANCELLOR’S REPORT AT THE 58TH MEETING OF THE GOVERNING COUNCIL ON SATURDAY, 19TH MARCH, 2016.

INTRODUCTION

I assumed duty as the Vice-Chancellor of Ajayi Crowther University, Oyo on Monday, 5th October, 2016, following my appointment by the Governing Council. At my appointment, the Chairman of the Governing Council, Chief. Wole Olanipekun saddled me with the task of effecting remarkable changes in the University, within my first six months in office. To the glory of God, and with the support of the Management team, we have been able to record not only physical, but also academic and spiritual changes in these past six months, which are hereby reported.

MAJOR POLICIES ENACTED

  • Discipline and dutifulness among staff and students have been enforced.
  • We have introduced an attendance for lecturers in all faculties which is signed at every lecture, to ensure that our students are being taught and that the lecturers do their jobs.
  • Students also sign attendance registers at their hostels and in their departments as evidence that they attend their lectures daily and are present on campus.
  • Dress codes for students and staff have been enforced.
  • Community Worship Service has been introduced. The entire staff and students of the University Community come together to worship at 3:00pm on Wednesdays every week, in addition to Sunday worship service and daily devotions in hostels and all departments.
  • Movement of students in and out of campus is being strictly monitored.
  • Students have been encouraged to report cases of harassment and extortion directly to the Vice-Chancellor.
  • Security on campus has been beefed up. In addition to the security outfit on campus, we recently employed the services of local hunters for over-night surveillance of the campus premises and to curb scaling of fences. We have also made contact with the DSS and Nigerian Police to further strengthen security on campus and check criminal tendencies.
  • The University Management has approved a 3-installmental payment schedule for payment of fees. With this, students can come into the University and resume for their studies with about one-third of the total fees payable and are expected to pay up their balances at the stipulated time on the payment schedule.
  • The Re-Run programme has been cancelled, and in an effort to clear the back log of failures, make-up examinations were organized for about 85% of students who had outstanding failed courses. The make-up examinations have been successfully conducted.
  • Parents and students can now access their results online irrespective of their financial status. This way, students and their parents can closely monitor their academic performance.
  • The University Management meets regularly, every week, to make decisions and policies to ensure the smooth running of the University. The Senate also holds regular monthly meetings.
  • A staff retreat was held, to address issues affecting the development of the University. The decisions from this retreat are now being implemented and progress is being recorded.


ACADEMIC DEVELOPMENT

  • The NUC visit for re-accreditation of undergraduate courses – Economics, Business Administration and Mass Communication, on the 7th of February, 2016 was a successful exercise and just two days ago, 17th March, 2016, we received another team of the NUC for resource assessment towards the commencement of our Postgraduate School and Faculty of Environmental studies, and we are hopeful for a favourable response from the NUC.
  • Senate has approved the separation of the Faculty of Social and Management Sciences into the Faculty of Social Sciences and Faculty of Management Sciences as two separate faculties. New programs will also be mounted in these faculties.
  • The Centres for Part-time studies and Pre-degree / foundation programme have been established. Directors have been appointed to these centres and they have taken-off immediately.
  • Admissions advertisement: we are embarking on massive admissions advertisement in order to boost student enrolment. We have a quota of 1,600 for admissions and we are making strong efforts to fill up that quota. We have a newly designed admissions flyer which we shall distribute very widely across our dioceses and parishes. We are also exploring the social media platforms for digital adverts.
  • The Law program of this University has received the accreditation of the Council for Legal Education, and the University can now fully undertake the Law program.
  • Senate has approved the introduction of new degree programmes in our existing faculties, among which are B.Sc. Entrepreneurial Studies, B.Sc. Horticulture, B.Sc. Insurance and Actuarial Science, B.A Theology and more across the faculties.
  • In not too distant future, we hope to have a College of Medicine and produce Ajayi Crowther University trained doctors and healthcare professionals. God is making room for us and we are expanding.
  • The 7th Convocation lecture titled ‘Faith-based Universities and National Development: towards a mandate re-appraisal’ was delivered by Prof. Babajide Alo, Deputy Vice-Chancellor, (Academics and Research), University of Lagos, on Friday, December 4, 2015, in a ceremony presided over by the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council, Chief Wole Olanipekun, SAN.
  • We commenced our inaugural lecture series. The pioneer inaugural lecture was on Thursday, 19th November, 2015, delivered by Prof. Joel Ayodabo of the department of English, the second followed on Thursday, 21st January, 2016 and was delivered by Prof. Mrs. Morenike Sanni, Professor of Microbiology. We shall hold the third inaugural lecture, by Prof. Adeleye, Professor of Geology on Thursday 24th March, 2016.
  • We held a special University lecture on Monday 14th December, 2016. The guest lecturer, Prof. Chris Imafidon from the United Kingdom is a Professor that serves in the University of Cambridge. In no distant time, we shall embark on collaborations with European Universities and ensure that our students are exposed to the best training such as is available anywhere in the world.

PHYSICAL AND INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT

The following physical and infrastructural developments have been recorded in these past six months:

  • The construction of the campus road network, a project commenced by my predecessor is near completion, with a few sections yet to be completed. However, work is in progress and we expect the project to be completed shortly.
  • A new 3000 capacity auditorium is under construction. This project commenced with funds provided by our proprietors, and enjoyed the kind donation of 5 million Naira, from the Pro-Chancellor, Chief Wole Olanipekun SAN, towards the roofing of the edifice. The auditorium was the venue of the Matriculation ceremony of newly admitted students which was held on 2nd December, 2015. It has also been the venue of our weekly worship services. Asides serving the University community, the auditorium shall also be an income generating asset, as event centre and crusade facility for churches and dioceses.
  • We purchased 1,000 pieces of plastic chairs for use in this new auditorium.
  • The existing old auditorium has been renovated and fully air-conditioned. A standby 100 KVA generator is installed to power it. It was used for the Convocation play and Valedictory service at the last convocation ceremonies and was the venue of our inaugural lectures.
  • The SACOBA guest house that formerly had 8 rooms has now been converted into a 16 room guest house, with 8 more rooms created on the ground floor.
  • A 30 seater Toyota Coaster bus has been acquired for use by staff and students and has since been put into use.
  • A Nissan Micra Car was purchased and immediately deployed for the use of ACU Shuttle services, for conveying students and staff within campus premises, following the banning Okada Motor cycles on campus (except those owned by staff and shop operators.
  • The construction of the new 10-block lecture rooms is near completion. The building has reached final stage and will be well furnished and air-conditioned. It is our intention to air-condition all the lecture rooms in the University.
  • We purchased 50 new street lights to add to the existing ones, to ensure that the campus is well lit at evening hours. The streetlights have been mounted at their respective locations and are now operational.
  • The Ajayi Crowther University Bookshop commenced operations January 5, 2016, as the University resumed from the Christmas break. The Bookshop serves both student and staff and is being operated by The Booksellers. A renowned company at the forefront of bookshop operations in Nigeria.
  • The Senate and Council Chamber of the University has been relocated from the SACOBA guesthouse and the Vice-Chancellor’s block respectively, to the new Senate and Council Chambers.
  • We have renovated and re-painted about 20 existing buildings in the University.
  • An old story building that was built in 1897, which served as the Principal’s office of St. Andrew’s College has been renovated and will soon house the University Museum that will house some of important artefacts of the old St. Andrews College of Education.
  • The old St. Andrew’s Chapel, which is over a hundred years old, has enjoyed modern renovations to give it a new look. We are grateful to Mr. Olutoyin Okeowo, a member of the governing council, for singlehandedly and voluntarily funding this project. This Chapel was re-dedicated on Monday February 1st, 2016. At this service, the Bible, pen and pocket watch used by Bishop Samuel Ajayi Crowther were presented to the University.
  • We also erected a baptistry, behind the old chapel, where baptism by immersion is performed.
  • The ultra-modern Faculty of Law complex, donated by the Alakija family has been commissioned and is also being furnished by the donors.
  • The 7th Convocation ceremony took place in the auditorium of the Faculty of Law complex.
  • We were also blessed with a new Vice-Chancellor’s lodge, donated by the Chairman of Council, Chief Wole Olanipekun. We are immensely grateful for this donation.
  • Zenith Bank Plc has deployed three new ATM machines on campus.
  • We have newly constructed, by aluminium partitioning, the office complex of the Postgraduate School.
  • Our halls of residence have been equipped with Plasma TVs, Refrigerators and Washing Machines.
  • The staff serving in the halls of residence have been re-interviewed, to ensure that the best hands are handling the care of our students in the halls.
  • We purchased about 20 sets of 8.5 KVA petrol powered generators as backup power source to supplement, in the absence of electricity supply and this has been deployed to hostels and the various faculties, department and units of the University.
  • We have restored the old 250 KVA generator that ceased functioning since the year 2010. This generator set is now back to functioning.
  • Management has also approved the setting up of inverters as alternative power supply for essential offices in the University.
  • New Wi-Fi internet facility has been deployed on campus. Students and staff can now access the internet at any location within the campus premises.
  • The Ajayi Crowther University Student’s Association (ACUSA), have put up their secretariat building. The students themselves were involved in this building project, Management also supported the project with funds.
  • We organized a rehabilitation program, in conjunction with Scripture Union Nigeria, for students with defiant behaviour who had been suspended from the University for various offences. Those who benefitted from this program have been allowed to resume their studies in the University under close monitoring. As a faith-based University, we realise that we have a Christian obligation to rescue the perishing and this informed the initiative.
  • We have newly created the University Information and Media Centre.
  • We have just concluded the creation of new lecturer’s offices, and departmental office for the department of Religious Studies.
  • We newly purchased 25 computer sets, for offices and newly established centres, we also purchased office furniture to be used in setting up the newly created offices.
  • We also purchased mobile public address systems for all faculties, to be used for lectures, and customized lecterns which we use for various occasions.

ON-GOING PROJECTS

  1. Commencement of ACU farm on the permanent site- management linked up with an expert, NIJI Farms who is helping to oversee the commencement of this project.
  2. Work is still in progress at the site of the new auditorium.
  3. We are setting out to commence the building of the extension of the Faculty of Natural Sciences complex.
  4. We are setting up inverter installations as alternative power supply in essential offices, and consequently, every other office as funds become available.
  5. Construction of gymnasium / indoor sports hall, near the football field.
  6. We have commenced the construction of staff quarters within campus premises, at what used to be the Bungalows hostel. The first phase has been completed.

FINANCE

In reporting the financial state of the University, it is essential for me to mention the following:

  1. Since we are chiefly dependent on fees paid by our students, Management made a strong resolution on payment of fees by prompting the parents and sponsors of ACU students to pay the school fees of their wards in due course. Management disallowed student debtors on campus at the resumption of the second semester, until their fees have been completely paid and this yielded positive results as a good number of debtors paid their fees.
  2. The University received a generous donation of twenty million Naira (N20,000,000) from the Parents/Sponsors forum, which we shall judiciously utilize in executing specific projects on campus and for the upgrading of our clinic facilities.
  3. We have offset the loan facility we had with First Bank Plc.

With the help of God, despite the limited resources available to us, we are trying our best possible to put the University in good shape and to sustain the day-to-day running of this University.

URGENT NEEDS OF THE UNIVERSITY

 For immediate re-packaging of the University, the followings shall be required:

  1. Organizing Endowments and Funds Raising occasions.
  2. Equipping the Serials section of the Library with up to date Journals.
  3. Funds to establish the following Ventures: (i) ACU Press (ii) ACU Bottled Water (iii) ACU Supermarket (iv) ACU Bakery and Confectionaries.
  4. Official Cars for the incoming Registrar, Bursar, Deans of faculties and Directors of Academic and Non-Academic Centers.
  5. An Ambulance for the Clinic.
  6. Furnishing of the Operation Theatre of the Clinic.
  7. Utility Truck car for Works Department.
  8. Refurnishing lecturers and senior staff offices.
  9. Funds for completion of ongoing Auditorium
  10. Building 20 – Room Business Centre to replace the ramshackle shops on campus.
  11. Construction of proper sporting facilities for student and staff.
  12. Funds for purchase of air-conditioners of all classrooms and offices.
  13. Funds for furnishing the new 10 block lecture rooms.

The above are humbly submitted as report of the Vice-Chancellor’s six months in office as well as expectations and proposed projects for the kind consideration and approval (in Principle), of the honourable Governing Council.

I thank the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council and all members of Council for giving me opportunity to serve this our University.

 

Rt. Rev. Prof. Dapo F. Asaju
Vice- Chancellor

 

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