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Nuc Sends Professors, Senior Lecturers To Oil Rig, Industries For Sabbatical Leave

Nigeria Student Forum / Educational News / Nuc Sends Professors, Senior Lecturers To Oil Rig, Industries For Sabbatical Leave

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Fadeyi Oluwaseun
Ladoke Akintola University Ogbomosho
B.tech Marketing Management
Graduate, Nigeria.

The Executive Secretary of National Universities Commission (NUC), Prof Abubakar Rasheed, said efforts to improve quality in Nigerian universities have compelled the Commission to initiate partnership with industry players, enabling most academic staff to go on sabbatical leaves in such places.

Prof. Rasheed said the measure became necessary to broaden the scope of academics, especially to expose them to practical knowledge, rather than relying on theories.

The NUC boss also expressed concern on how some higher institutions in Africa award degrees to students in less than a year or two, warning that Nigerians who graduate from such institutions will not be recognised for employment or inducted into the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

Speaking at the 11th International Conference and Workshops on Quality Assurance in Higher Education in Africa tagged: “Towards Sustainability of the Continental Harmonisation Agenda of Higher Education in Africa,” the executive secretary said poor outputs from Nigerian universities necessitated the action.

“We have introduced a scheme where we send our senior lecturers, especially those in the professorial cadre to go on sabbatical leave in our local industries like oil rig and other manufacturing sectors,” he said.

“We came to this idea that it’s far more beneficial to them and our students rather than going on sabbatical from one university to another to teach.

“When these lecturers for instance spend some time in the rig, we believe when they return to the classroom their approach to teaching will be far more enhanced,” he added.

While noting that the Commission looked inward and discovered that there was a need to strengthen the quality assurance system, he said hinging on that, the NUC recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding, with the Nigerian Economic Summit Group, (NESG) to enable academics have direct interface with industrialists and policy makers to broaden their horizon.

According to him, issues of quality assurance should come as a natural phenomenon in Nigerian Universities, noting that universities around the world gain international recognition by virtue of enforcing quality standards.

He advised Nigerian universities to take a cue from global best practices, warning that the NUC would henceforth sanction any university found wanting in breaching quality assurance mechanisms in the system.

Speaking, the Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, while declaring the conference open said in spite of Nigeria having 171 universities, the problem of access particularly in university education has continued to be formidable.

Nwajiuba, however, said the federal government has taken a number of measures like expansion of human and material resources to improve the capacity of universities and licensing of more private universities to improve access without compromising quality.

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