The National Universities Commission (NUC) and National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) have graduated the fifth set of participants in the series of capacity building activities to strengthen the implementation of the 2019-2023 Blueprint on the Rapid Revitalisation of University Education in Nigeria.
Executive Secretary, NUC, Professor Abubakar Rasheed who was represented by Dr. Biodun Saliu, in his remark, underscored the importance of strategic planning for a revitalised Nigerian university system and urged all university managers to take steps to reformulate their strategic plans to respond to contemporary developments in higher education.
The training programme is one of the thrusts of the Rasheed Revolution in the Nigerian university system. Module 5 of the training which was conducted between July 18 and August 29, 2022 was on theory and practice of strategic planning and was designed to reposition Nigerian universities for delivery of quality education through the implementation of well-designed strategic plans.
A total of 271 Vice-Chancellors, Deputy Vice-Chancellors, Directors of Academic Planning, senior academics and staff of NUC and NOUN graduated from the eight-week course on Tuesday, August 30, 2022.
In an earlier address, the Vice-Chancellor of NOUN, Professor Olufemi Peters expressed delight that the NOUN platform is being used for the conduct of the training through the Virtual Institute for Capacity Building in Higher Education (VICBHE).
Peters noted that “this confirms, increasingly, the high quality of NOUN’s delivery system.” Of the 271 participants who graduated, 195 earned Distinction. Professor Ibiyinka Fuwape of Michael and Cecilia Ibru University won the Nimi Briggs Prize for the Best Vice-Chancellor in the course while Professor Bolanle Akinwande of Ladoke Akintola University won the Ruqayyatu Ahmed Rufa’i prize for best female participant and four other prizes.
The Olufemi Peters Prize for the best former Vice-Chancellor in the course was won by Professor Ezzeldin Mukhtar Abdurahman, former Vice-Chancellor, Bauchi State University. The Abubakar Adamu Rasheed prize for best participant in the course was won by Professor Abdulrasheed Adeoye, former Dean of Arts of University of Ilorin.
The Olusola Oyewole Prize for the best participant from other African countries was awarded to Dr. Ndayishimiye Richard from Burundi.
In his keynote address at the event, Professor Juma Shabani, Chairman of the National Council for Higher Education of Burundi, underscored the importance of strategic planning for African universities in meeting national and regional aspirations.
He gave the example of the University of Burundi doctoral school as case study of how benefits can be derived from well-developed strategic plans.
The Director/Facilitator of VICBHE, Professor Emeritus Peter Okebukola presented an overview of the training. According to Okebukola “during the course, participants learned conceptual and theoretical framework of strategic planning; key elements and stages of strategic planning; setting up a website for progressive development of a strategic plan; comparative analysis of university strategic plans; implementing steps 1 to 6 in the VICBHE Strategic Plan Model and uploading to the website and practical steps in midterm and final review of a strategic plan.
It was eight weeks of lectures, weekly discussion forums, weekly tests, weekly practical exercises, end-of-module comprehensive examination and a project.
Okebukola further noted that “one of the products of the practical training is the development by each participant of a strategic plan.
“These plans were contributed as case studies to a book by participants who earned distinction grades in the project.
“The quality of the case studies is indicative of the commitment of the participants to the training. Each case study reports extensively on the process leading to the development of the plan. Very detailed and well-costed plans resulted from this process. More importantly, each document has a monitoring and evaluation component which will be basis for periodic review”.
The book was publicly presented at the graduation ceremony by the Secretary-General of the Association of African Universities, Professor Olusola Oyewole.