The Olabisi Onabanjo University (OOU), Ago-Iwoye, Ogun State, said, it has produced over 265,000 graduates and postgraduates in the last 40 years of its existence.
The University Vice Chancellor, Prof. Ayodeji Agboola, who disclosed this at a press conference to herald the five-month activities marking the 40th anniversary of the institution, said the University has grown from four faculties at inception into three Colleges and 13 faculties.
Agboola in his address titled, “OOU @ 40 Lighting the Path of Academic Excellence: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow”, explained that the university which started with 522 students and four faculties in 1983, has grown to receive 22,000 applications from candidates with about seven thousand quota every year.
He added that the OOU now runs 72 programmes with full accreditation for 65 of them by the National University Commission.
The vice chancellor also disclosed that the institution had produced 190 first-class graduates between 2016 and 2021 academic sessions.
“To improve on the academic programmes of the institution, four new academic programmes had been developed and accredited by the National Universities Commission (NUC) within the last decade. These included Civil Engineering, Music, Linguistics and Nursing Science”.
“In addition, the institution has established academic programmes, that include;
Institute of Governance Studies; Open and Distance Learning Centre.
“The current ranking of the academic programmes, based on the accreditation of programmes in 2020/2021 places the University higher in professional programmes such as Medicine, Law, Accounting, Banking and Finance, Economics, Engineering, amongst others, than similar programmes in most of the Universities in Nigeria”, he said.
“A Webometric Committee that was established to improve the visibility of the University continue to perform, with the University web visibility up from its previous 26th position in 2017 to 18th in 2022, out of a total of 170 Universities in Nigeria”.
“We are the 4th State University out of 49 in Nigeria on the Webometric ranking”.
“Over the years, academic programmes at Olabisi Onabanjo University have enjoyed high ratings as evident in the accreditation reports of 2021. These rating gave rise to the good standing of Olabisi Onabanjo University among the comity of Nigerian Universities”.
“It is on record that the University was the first to use Artificial Intelligence (AI) to conduct screening examinations for candidates seeking admission into the University”.
Speaking on steps to check the rate at which students drop out of school, Agboola said the management of the Olabisi Onabanjo University has introduced work studies to enable students work and attend classes.
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He said: “When we noticed the rate at which students were dropping out, we did the SWOT analysis of what happened to them. We came to realize that the major problem is funding. So, we instituted immediate funding but, of course, it cannot take care of all of them.
“So, going forward, we have agreed that we are going to be doing work studies where funding will be given to just 500 (students) because, we cannot take care of all of them.
“With work studies, we are sure that majority of them will be accommodated and that will also solve the problem.”
Agboola, who assumed office last October, said that his administration would ensure academic excellence, high impact and translational research, university administration, improved students experience, entrepreneurial linkages and partnership and improved and sustainable funding.
He said that the next five years would be used to consolidate on various achievements of the past administrations.