The First Technical University, initially known as Technical University, Ibadan has graduated her first set of students on Saturday.
During the convocation, the 12 first class students were offered immediate employment, out of the 63 graduating students. Meanwhile, 24 of them were said to have graduated with second class upper.
Tech-U, as it is popularly called, was established almost five years ago by the immediate past administration.
The Oyo State Governor, ‘Seyi Makinde on Saturday, however restated his administration’s commitment towards the delivery of free and qualitative education as a way of lifting the people of the state from poverty to prosperity.
Speaking at the maiden convocation ceremony of Tech-U, held at the University Hall, Lagos/Ibadan expressway, Ibadan, Makinde said that the graduands of the institution have acquired the necessary skills in vocational training and entrepreneurship skills which should make them self-reliance and job creators.
Governor Makinde, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Olubamiwo Adeosun, explained that globally, emphasis has shifted from white collar jobs to self-employment, adding that attention has shifted towards institutions that prepare graduates as job providers and not mere job seekers.
The governor, while congratulating the eminent personalities that were conferred with distinguished fellowship award of First Technical University (Tech-U), Ibadan, sought for more assistance in terms of donations for the advancement of the institution.
He commended the Management of the Institution for the priority attention it gave to staff and students’ welfare, which he said has manifested in the stable academic calendar and peaceful conduct of the students of the school.
He charged the graduands to support the government in creating jobs through the vocational and entrepreneurship skills that they have acquired in the university.
He therefore admonished them to be good ambassadors of the Institution and Oyo state at large.
He said, “I am greatly delighted to be here today on the occasion of the maiden Convocation Ceremonies of this citadel of learning – First Technical University (Tech-U), Ibadan.
“This epoch-making event is not only significant in the history of this great Institution, it also provides more opportunities for the re-engineering of the state and its lost glory in the area of vocational and entrepreneurship skills. Before I dwell further, let me on behalf of myself and the entire State Executive Council congratulate the Vice-Chancellor of this Institution, Professor Ayo Salami together with his team for this milestone and being a part of this historic event.
“However, it is not how long that matters but how well. It is in this background that I congratulate the graduands for the successful completion of your programmes”.
Makinde also congratulated the eminent personalities who have distinguished themselves in their respective callings and have been considered worthy to be conferred with distinguished fellowship award of First Technical University (Tech-U), Ibadan.
He expressed happiness that many of the awardees were already contributing towards the upliftment of the Institution, while also praising the host communities for the cordial relationship that exists between them and Tech-U.
Those who were conferred awards of honorary doctorate degrees were: Chief (Dr.)Tunde Afolabi, the institution’s Chancellor, notable entreprenuer, Chief Adebayo Akande, former Head of Service of the Federation, Chief Mrs. Amal Pepple, Professor of history, Toyin Falola and the Managing Director of Guarantee Trust Bank, Mr. Segun Agbaje.
The governor therefore used the opportunity to seek support and donations from the dignitaries, to contribute towards the advancement of the institution..
He further submitted: “Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I, on behalf of the State Government, I wish to acknowledge the landmark achievements of Tech-U in the areas of research and development, as well as collaboration with donor agencies, sister institutions and international organisations.
“Some of these partnerships have further earned the state international recognition and funding of notable projects in the institution.
“Let me reiterate that this administration sees education as a key aspect of growth and development. And that is why it forms an integral part of the four-point service agenda. Our goal is to ensure free and qualitative education in a bid towards lifting the people from poverty and underdevelopment. This is why we have been ambitiously investing in education at all levels”, he added.
In his address, the pioneer Vice Chancellor of the institution, Prof. Ayobami Salami, said that Tech-U is a very unique institution that ensures that apart from the normal degree programme, every student goes through a Diploma programme in Entrepreneurship and a certificate programme in one other international language apart from English.
He said the institution has recorded many achievements within the short time of its existence, saying that in the latest ranking by NUC, the Tech-U is 7th among all the state universities, and 27th among all the universities ranked in Nigeria.
The VC, hinted that the university within two years of commencement of academic activities won three international research grants with a combined worth of over $450, 000 and host of many others.
He appreciated the governor of Oyo state for giving free hand to run the Institution and allowing local government scholarship scheme to continue unhindered.
He therefore announced that the first class graduands who are interested in academic pursuits have been offered automatic employment immediately after their National Youth Service.
He added that the school has secured the support of the local and international partners to award scholarship to all that accept the offer, to enable them have international exposure through Masters degree training in the United States of America as well as Brazil.