A total of three thousand, seven hundred and forty-seven (3, 747) persons graduated during the 38th convocation ceremony of the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education which took place on Friday, December 18 and Saturday, December 19, 2020, at the university auditorium. Out of this number, 205 obtained Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree, 1, 087 Master’s degree, 521 Postgraduate Diplomas and 1, 934 Bachelor’s degree. Seventy-eight (78) of the graduands obtained the first-class honours degree.
Speaking during the event, the Vice-Chancellor of IAUE, Professor Ozo- Mekuri Ndimele noted that convocation marks the end of one’s studentship in the university and that the graduands worked hard to earn the enviable feat. He urged them to be worthy ambassadors and to remain connected to their alma mater having joined the league of distinguished alumni to see what areas they can assist in the university development.
He expressed appreciation to the Rivers State Governor Chief (Barrister) Nyesom Ezenwo Wike (CON) for his commitment in transforming Rivers State in all sectors with good road network, flyovers, education, housing, health, security and for improving the fortunes of the Ignatius Ajuru University of Education.
Professor Ndimele who emphasized that the Governor made possible the level of development attained in the university with his support and encouragement, added that the grant approved and released in 2018 by the Governor is the reason that the institution has become the most sought after university south of the Niger.
According to him, the postgraduate school has overtaken others in the region, particularly in areas that the National Universities Commission (NUC) allowed the university to operate because of the impact of the grant.
The university, the Vice-Chancellor hinted, run the most efficient postgraduate school with the conducive learning environment, 21 well-furnished classrooms and auditorium in less than four years of its existence, an achievement older universities are yet to attain.
He thanked the State Governor for prompt payment of staff salaries, a development that he noted has motivated and strongly energized the workforce for more productive work.
The Chief Executive also expressed gratitude to the Rivers State Honourable Commissioner for Education, Professor Kaniye Ebeku for the support received so far and to the governing council, staff, students and benefactors.
He thanked individuals and organizations for instituting various prizes and awards for graduands and other forms of donations. He appealed for funding to cater for two new buildings for the Faculty of Technical and Vocational Education and Faculty of Social Sciences, for more classroom spaces to accommodate the large influx of students, for a befitting auditorium for matriculation and convocation ceremonies.
He also appealed for recruitment of more staff especially as the university stands to lose accreditation in virtually all programmes when the National Universities Commission (NUC) visits by the first quarter of next year and for the modification of the name of the university from Ignatius Ajuru University of Education to Ignatius Ajuru University.
Professor Ozo-Mekuri Ndimele listed the following as some of his humble achievements; completion of 71 new classrooms/lecture spaces 10 at the new Faculty of Education building, 10 at the new postgraduate classrooms at Wike Centre of Excellence, 6 at the new undergraduate lecture halls at Wike Centre of Excellence, 6 at the new auditorium extension, 2 large halls at the ICT centre, the Seaside Theatre building, 9 large halls at the International Students lecture complex, 6 large halls and 4 studios at the Faculty of Business Studies, 2 halls at the International students study centre, 4 large classrooms at Emmanuel Aguma Postgraduate lecture complex, 1 language laboratory at Emmanuel Aguma Postgraduate lecture complex.
The Vice-Chancellor said that his target is to build at least 80 lecture halls before he tenures as the Vice-Chancellor of IAUE ends.
He used the opportunity to call on all distinguished alumni to contribute towards the growth of their alma mater by making cash donations or the endowment of chairs and foundations.
Professor Ndimele congratulated the graduands of the institution adjudged as the fastest growing university south of the Niger and wished them well.
The highpoint of the ceremony was the presentation of one million naira cash award to the best graduating student of the university Miss Faith Chidinma Igbonekwu.