The Private University and American Higher Education
As part of the programmes to mark the maiden matriculation ceremony of Afe Babalola University, Ado-Ekiti (ABUAD), an inauguration lecture was delivered by the Vice-President of McArthur Foundation, Professor Arthur Sussman, at the University Campus on Friday, 19th March, 2010. The event was chaired by Prof. O. O. Akinkugbe, the emeritus professor of Medicine. Welcoming guests to the occasion, the Registrar, ABUAD, Mrs. Christie Oluborode, lauded Founder and Chancellor of the University, Aare Afe Babalola, OFR, CON, SAN, whose excellent legacies bequeathed to humanity was being cerebrated. She said that the vision of ABUAD was to become one of the leading universities in the world, adding that the inaugural matriculation lecture by Prof. Arthur Sussman, a legal expert from University of Chicago, USA, was in line with this vision.
Introducing the guest lecturer, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Sidi Osho described Prof. Sussman as a scholar of International repute, whose scholarly contributions had immensely helped in the development of University education in the United State. The Vice-Chancellor enjoined the audience to take advantage of the lecture which would help to ground University managers in global trends in University Management.
In his lecture titled “The Private University and American Higher Education”
Prof. Sussman underscored the need for increased access to University education through the establishment of Private institutions. He paid tribute to Chief Afe Babalola, describing him as a man who had dedicated much of his life to higher education. The Lecturer sounded the need for the payment of tuition fees and the establishment of endowment fund as the main sources of funding of Private Universities.
He emphasized the need for healthy relationship among the three key players in University governance, namely: Trustee, Administrators and Faculty. Universities affairs, according to him, should be handled by persons of honour and integrity who understand the business of University education. For effective service delivery, he opined that full autonomy and academic freedom should be allowed to prevail in the Nigerian University System. The Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Professor Julius A. Okojie, felicitated with the management, staff and students of ABUAD on the occasion of their first matriculation and expressed joy that the historic event was taking place during his tenure as the Executive Secretary of NUC. He enjoined well meaning Nigerians to support ABUAD morally and financially to attain enviable standards and advised the students to shun all social vices that would distract them from their academic pursuit.
Giving the closing remarks, the Pro- Chancellor, Professor Iyorwuese Hagher thanked the guest lecturer for the new thoughts he brought to bear on University governance. He appealed to all stakeholders to support ABUAD in its drive to attain the status of a Centre of Excellence.
Other guests at the event included, the Deputy Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Sikiru Tai Lawal, members of the national Assembly, Prof. Tunde Adeniran, former Minister of Education, His Royal Highness, Oba Rufus Adeyemo Adeyuigbe, JP, the Ewi of Ado-Ekiti, , Federal Ministers, States House Assembly, Commissioners, Vice-Chancellors of Federal and State Universities, Principal officers, staff and students of ABUAD.