Former UNIPORT VC calls for revamping culture of academic excellence

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Emeritus Prof. Nimi Briggs, the former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Port-Harcourt (UNIPORT), has called on Nigerian universities to revamp their academic culture to revitalise the university system.

But Riggs made the call on Thursday at the workshop for senior lecturers of Lagos State University (LASU) on revamping academic culture toward achieving academic excellence in the institution.

He said that revamping academic culture was dependent on the level of commitment the senate of the university shows to issues of quality and excellence.“This workshop seeks to encourage the Senate to commit to this path. Universities are apex degree-awarding higher educational institutions where teachers and learners gather for educational pursuits.“Such educational pursuits include perpetual search for the truth to be used to contribute to the improvement of the quality of life of all people,” Briggs said.

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He added that universities’ activities were of public good based on probity, autonomy, academic freedom and accountability.“Universities should be committed to excellence and quality in all aspects of work, extent of commitment determines visibility, respect, acceptance and relevance.“Universities must build a reputation for scholarship, integrity, respectability, accountability, high demand by students globally and faculties of great repute,” Briggs said.

He also urged Nigerian universities to constantly review their core curriculum as when due. In her opening speech Prof. Ibiyemi Olatunji-Bello, Vice-Chancellor, LASU, said that the choice of academic staff in the senior lectureship cadre and above was strategic since they were the bridge between the young and old.” The culture of an environment forms the foundation of acquisition of knowledge, hence academic culture has a great impact on academic excellence.

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“Without a doubt academic excellence can only be achieved by creating an environment that fosters intellectual, social and ethical growth, which will lead to success and career fulfilment,” she said. Olatunji-Bello added that LASU management would keep working patiently at building the academic culture that would foster positive action and the institution better prepared and successful. (NAN)

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