A renowned don from the Department of Linguistics and African Languages, University of Ibadan, Nigeria, Professor Francis Egbokhare has said that universities are the last channel for value formation and pipeline for national development.
He stated this at the ongoing Annual Retreat of the College of Humanities and Culture of the Osun State University, on Friday.
In his speech tagged, “Mentorship, Academic Collaboration and University Culture: A Global Perspective” the don added that teamwork, freedom of learning, institutional autonomy, intellectual development, pursuit of truth, academic and moral integrity, leadership, service orientation, respect for one another and diversity are the core elements which determine an ideal academic culture.
The professor of linguistics who described UNIOSUN as a unique institution, also emphasised the need for academic collaboration, mentoring practices, national ideology-driven research and curricula that emphasize interdisciplinarity.
He noted that belief in single modernity is a bane on educational development in the country and advocated for a system that is open to diversity.
His words, “this (belief in single modernity) mindset enforces a worldview and paradigm that is considered as truth but only applicable to originating cultural ideology. It ignores the fact that there are alternative paths to progress and divergent conceptual possibilities of what constitutes progress, development and modernity.”
“Alternative and authentic pathways have been crowded out and there is a failure to build our educational system on the basis of the potentials of our society. The foregoing emphasizes the fact that a critical appraisal of the nature of state, vision/ideology of state, national priorities and vision of humanity should be at the centre of our approach to learning.”
“What we regard as knowledge, what we allocate to diverse aspects of knowledge enterprise cannot be determined externally on the conviction that the propositions from the global centres of power are always right and true.”
“Global standards are not global at all and standards are not in fact standards but project narrow perspectives which are validated by researches localized and whose results are generalized as universal. Prescribed models for dealing with issues have to be tested locally. Standards and procedures can easily be seen as cultural template for thinking and narrowing down alternatives. The strident call for endogenous solutions to problems is a call for a culturally appropriate approach. There is in fact a clear recognition of the importance of culture in development agendas.
“However, all these exist within a hegemonic cultural and intellectual agenda and an ideological regulatory environment that leaves little room for dissent, diversity and creativity.”
“We need to state here that the unstable economy and spiralling inflation, coupled with the absence of education supportive production and industry, as well as the fact that the university model prescribes an environment artificially removed from the social and economic conditions of society, makes the funding of subsisting models of learning unattainable. A mass driven qualitative model based on collaboration, resource pooling and extensive mobilization of national assets for distributed learning recommends itself.”
“The focus should be on teaching, training, social transformation, community service and preservation of indigenous knowledge. Research should be carefully planned as an extension of national ideology in areas of strategic axes of freedom.”
Themed: “Strategizing for Effective Workplace Performance towards Sustainable University Culture”, the College Retreat, according to the provost of the college, Dr. (Mrs) Temitope Balogun said that the objective of the event was to enhance the university staffers’ knowledge and skills in order for them to improve their performances in teaching, learning, research and community building.
The retreat had in attendance, a former provost of the college, Prof. Kizito Folorunsho, the Registrar of the university, Mr. Ganiyu Shittu represented by Mr. Haruna Adetu, Head of Departments including Dr. Adeyemi Aderogba Dr. Rotimi Fasan, Dr. Rabiu Iyanda, and Dr. Adesola Adesote and other members of staff. It is billed to hold from 24th – 27th of Jan, 2020.
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