The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Sulyman Age Abdulkareem, has stressed the need for graduating students of the institution to be purposeful and ingenious, as well as imbibe the virtue of perseverance, saying these qualities will distinguish them for success in whatever area of life they find themselves.

Prof. Abdulkareem, who stated this last Friday (October 20, 2017), in his address at the 33rd Convocation Ceremonies of the University, admonished the graduands to have “uncommon common sense” to be able to survive in today's world.

In the address, entitled “Life Has Just Begun”, the Vice-Chancellor said, “Gone are the days employers waited on convocation arena with juicy job offers. The reality now is different and it is a survival of the fittest. Just graduating from the university is no longer enough to get a job.”

Prof. Abdulkareem told the graduands, “One sure way of winning the struggle is to be purposeful and ingenious. Dare to be different. You need to persevere because perseverance is the common trait most successful people have in common and that is what has made them succeed where others have failed”.

The Vice-Chancellor urged the graduands to maximise their potentials for self development, as well as for impacting the society at large, saying they are to be job creators, not seekers and must contribute to national development through public service and support, by judiciously utilising the talent and skills that have been acquired from the University.

Enjoining the graduands to be good ambassadors of the University by proving to the world that they have indeed been found worthy in character and learning, Prof. Abdulkareem told them to see themselves as prominent ambassadors of the Better-By-far institution; an unequalled citadel where great leaders are milled; the second-to-none ivory tower that holds integrity and excellence in high esteem.”

The Vice-Chancellor then stressed the University's commitment to achieving academic excellence, noting that Unilorin boasts of “an uninterrupted learning environment that is unimpeded by incessant strikes, student unrest and other allied factors which have earned most academic institutions in Nigeria a notorious fame of ignominy and repudiation.”

He added that contrary to recurrent industrial actions and shut down of many tertiary schools in Nigeria, in the last 17 years, the University of Ilorin has witnessed unprecedented peace and stability of academic calendar. “This success is the product of collective will, integrity and selfless service to humanity”, Prof. Abdulkareem noted.

Commending his predecessor, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali, for his effort, the Vice-Chancellor said the University made “giant and remarkable strides in the area of infrastructural development under him. He said, for instance, “in the 2016/2017 academic session, not less than 20 major capital projects were executed and completed and majority of them will be commissioned tomorrow (Saturday, October 21, 2017) within and outside the campus.”

Earlier in his address, the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the University's Governing Council, Dr Abdullah Jibril Oyekan, reaffirmed the Council's commitment to work in unity with staff, students, all stakeholders and also maintain the cordial relationship and understanding with the University's management.

Dr. Oyekan, who pledged his unalloyed loyalty to “Team Unilorin”, stated that every stakeholder has a role to play and when all and sundry play their respective roles with diligence and commitment, “together, we can lift the University to loftier heights”.

Noting that belonging to “Team Unilorin” is not an empty gesture, the Pro-Chancellor explained that “it implies total dedication to the pursuit of excellence in whatever one is engaged in, putting in all that is demanded and bading farewell to mediocrity for good. Students, staff and even alumni are tasked with the role of raising the banner of the University of Ilorin anywhere in the world.”

Dr Oyekan then stated that in the pursuit of excellence, graduands should be hardworking, focused and determined to make the sacrifice necessary to achieve the set goals. He added that the University will also not relent in its pursuit of excellence and “we shall not be fulfilled until our professors begin to metamorphose into Nobel laureates”.

The Patriarch of Britain's brainiest and smartest family, Prof. Chris Imafidon, has revealed his proven methods of turning low performing and average students into geniuses.

Delivering the 33rd Convocation Lecture of the University of Ilorin last Thursday (October 19,2017), entitled "The Genius in You: New Tools, Techniques and Technology for Developing Individual and Institutional Greatness", Prof. Imafidon, who is the Chairman and Founder of Excellence in Education Programme, University of Oxford, United Kingdom, noted that the first step teachers need to take in order to make geniuses out of their students is to regard the students as their biological offspring. He said that without the right emotional connection, teachers can only churn out average students. 

The Unilorin Convocation Lecturer also disclosed that other components of a programme designed to turn students into geniuses include: convincing students that there is nothing they cannot achieve; ensuring that the students are always busy with their academics; and ensuring that sport and music are not extra-curricular but part of the core-curriculum.

The Nigerian born scholar attributed the origin of knowledge to God and countered the notion that knowledge is power, saying that “it is the application of knowledge that confers power".

Prof. Imafidon then called for the review of the tertiary education system in the country, saying that the system produced the oxymoron known as “graduate unemployment”.         He said this should be replaced with talent hunt programmes because, according to him, there are geniuses everywhere who exist as repressed geniuses, suppressed geniuses and expressed geniuses.

While commenting on the state of education in Nigeria, Prof. Imafidon, who is a world renowned adviser to monarchs, European and USA governments, presidents and corporate leaders, called on the Federal Government to pay serious attention to education in the country.

He observed that if education is properly fixed, other sectors of the society would be automatically fixed given that education is the mother of all sectors.

The Convocation Lecturer also urged the government to give priority attention to education budget over that of defence, saying that “you cannot defend an empty house”.

Prof. Imafidon condemned the ongoing call for restructuring Nigeria, describing it as a trivial and misplacement of priority. According to him, the only antidote to Nigerian problems is for the leaders to restructure their thinking.

The Oxford University Professor lampooned Nigerian leaders who own private jets, saying that it is sheer wickedness and insensitivity to the plight of the people for some state governors, who habitually owe workers' salaries to fly around in private jets. He noted that the Queen of England and Prime Ministers in advanced countries do not have private jets.

The Convocation Lecturer, who was delivering his first public lecture in Africa announced that he would be taking the best two graduating students and the worst two graduating students along to the United Kingdom just as he invited the troupe that performed Kehinde Olalusi's play, "Susan Wenger, Adunni Olorisa" to the United Kingdom.

According to him, "The rest of my family that saw the clips of it on Facebook live, Periscope and other social media are jealous of me. They wished they came along. Even the royals wanted to see you. I have been mandated to ask if you will like to come up to Britain to do a repeat. If so, Her Majesty could host you at her weekend residence of Windsor Castle".

The Kwara State Governor, Dr. Abdul­fatah Ahmed, has congratulated the new Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Sulyman Age Abdulkareem, over his appoint­ment and assump­tion of duty as the new helmsman of the institution.

The governor, in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secre­tary, Alhaji Abdulwa­hab Oba, described Prof. Abdulkareem as a tested adminis­trator and academ­ic of high repute, whose appointment will not only sustain the successes of his predecessors but re­cord new milestones in the better by far University. “This ap­pointment is a well-deserved one”, the governor said.

Dr. Ahmed assured the University of his ad­ministration's sup­port and cooperation, especially in the are­as of human capital development and re­search on agricultural practice and sustaina­ble energy.

The governor also congratulated the former Vice-Chan­cellor, Prof Abdul­Ganiyu Ambali (OON), for ensuring that the in­stitution maintained a stable academ­ic calendar, among other achievements. He prayed God to see the new Vice-Chan­cellor through in his new but familiar po­sition of responsibil­ity to his fatherland and humanity, and to grant him strength, wisdom and more knowledge to achieve his goals.

Less than six months into his tenure as the Governing Council Chairman of the University of Ilorin, the Pro-Chancellor, Dr. Abdullah Jubril Oyekan, has launched the 'Team Unilorin' Project, a major rebranding campaign to inspire members of the University community towards greater attainments.

Dr.  Oyekan, who made this announcement on Day 2 of the 33rd Convocation Ceremonies of the University of Ilorin last Saturday (October 21, 2017), said that the 'Team Unilorin' Project implies “total dedication to the pursuit of excellence in whatever one is engaged in, putting in all that is demanded and bidding farewell to mediocrity for good. Whether directly involved as students or lecturers or in a supporting role as non-academic staff, there is a strong commitment in raising the banner of Unilorin aloft anywhere and everywhere in the world and practicalising the Unilorin Slogan 'Better by Far.'

He further pointed out that, “every single stakeholder has a role to play and that when all and sundry play their respective roles together we can lift the University to loftier heights”

According to the Pro-Chancellor, “serious pursuit of excellence involves hardwork, being focused and determined to make the sacrifice necessary to achieve set goal. It requires doggedness and it means that we shall not feel fulfilled until our Professors being to metamorphose into Nobel Laureate. Belonging to Team Unilorin also means aspiring for decency and the most commendable human traits.”

However, Dr Oyekan noted that, these aspirations cannot be realised without adequate funding, adding that, “we must find the wherewithal to provide the necessary funds to finance all our projects and aspirations.”

 While noting that the Council has mapped out an Action Plan for Development from the existing Strategic Plan of the University, as well as commissioning of a forensic audit, the Chairman added that, the Council intends to put the “University on the path towards extending the frontiers of knowledge and blaze a new trail in its areas of academic endeavour as a very highly rated Institution if world-renown. The Council will continue to work harmoniously with staff, students, all stakeholders and maintain the cordial relationship and understanding with the University Management.”

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Sulyman Age Abdulkareem, has assured the entire University community that he would take the University to a greater height in terms of academic advancement, human capital development and provision of necessary infrastructures.

Prof. Abdulkareem stated this last Monday (October 16, 2017), when he addressed the staff of the University, who gathered at the Main Auditorium to usher him into his office amidst jubilation.

He expressed his gratitude at the reception accorded him by the staff members, pledging not to disappoint them but work towards sustaining the successes of his predecessors and building on them to make the University greater.

 “I will not disappoint anyone of you. You can count on my support and I also need your support. I will work for you and I want you to work for the University. Let us mind our business and operate optimally”, Prof. Abdulkareem said.

The Vice-Chancellor added that the money of the University would be judiciously spent, saying that he would never sit on anyone's money for a minute as he pleaded with the staff to be patient with him.

Noting that everyone is important in the place of work no matter the nature of their assignment, Prof. Abdulkareem submitted that anyone who is dedicated to his work would go places in life.

He said, “I want you to operate at whatever level you are. You can be sure that I will treat everyone with utmost respect but I also want you to treat your work with respect. I am afraid of God and I will not use this opportunity I have as Vice-Chancellor to oppress anyone”.

The Vice-Chancellor then proceeded to meet with the staff of the Office of the Vice-Chancellor, where he commended them for the work they have been doing and pleaded for their support to take the University higher.

In his first official meeting with the Principal Officers of the University, Prof. Abdulkareem, who thanked God for helping the university thus far, also noted that the University has been getting better and stronger. He requested for the support of the Principal Officers and expressed optimism that new opportunities have come to develop young minds that will lift the nation.

The Vice-Chancellor also observed that his predecessor, Prof. AbdulGaniyu Ambali (OON), enjoyed very cordial relationship with the management team and appealed to the Principal Officers to extend similar support to him so that he can excel in his new position.

Promising to operate an open door policy, Prof. Adulkareem said that he would welcome constructive criticism and advice from all.

Earlier, the Registrar, Mr. Emmanuel Obafemi, who spoke on behalf of other Principal Officers, pledged to do everything possible to ensure the success of the new administration.

Mr. Obafemi expressed optimism that the University of Ilorin will be better than it was by the end of the five years' tenure of Prof. Abdulkareem's administration.

The Principal Officers that ushered the new Vice-Chancellor into his office included the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic), Prof. N. Y. S. Ijaiya; the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (MS), Prof. A. Y. Abdulkareem; the Registrar, Mr. E. D. Obafemi; the University Librarian, Dr. Issa Abdulwahab and the Bursar, Mr. Saka Abiodun Yusuf.

The Igbomina-Ekiti Muslims Forum (IEMF) has congratulated Prof. Sulyman Age Abdulkareem, as he resumes work as the 10th Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin.

The Chairman of the Forum, Alhaji Abdulazeez Olawuyi, extended the greetings when he led members of the Forum on a congratulatory visit to the Vice-Chancellor in his office last Monday (October 16, 2017).

Alhaji Olawuyi beseeched Allah to guard and guide Prof. Abdulkareem to succeed in his new position.

In his response, the Vice-Chancellor, who pledged to be a good ambassador of Igbomina land, also appealed to members of the IEMF to always call him to order whenever they noticed any irregularities in him.

The new Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ilorin, Prof. Sulyman Age Abdulkareem, has stressed the need to enhance learning in the Sciences by finding a way in which equations can be brought to life through visualisations as seen in the success of students in the staged Convocation Play.

Prof. Abdulkareem said this last Tuesday (October 17,2017) while commending the crew of the Convocation Play for the 33rd Convocation Ceremonies of the University, a dance drama, entitled "Susan Wenger, (Adunni Olorisa)" written by Kehinde Olalusi and staged by students of the Department of the Performing Arts.

The Vice-Chancellor described the Department of Performing Arts as one where students learn joyfully as he noted that the students involved in the play disposed their responsibility with utmost diligence and dedication and they show that with enough practice, students can become perfect in what they do.

“If only I can express chemical equations with visuals, my students will learn with more joy like the students of the Performing Arts”, Prof. Abdulkareem noted and therefore challenged the Department of the Performing Arts and other relevant departments such as that of Education Technology to advance the frontiers of teaching and learning through research and collaboration that will lead to artistic way of teaching sciences to attain national development more easily.

The Vice-Chancellor further noted that the life of Susan Wenger is a lesson in dedication, whatever our callings, adding that if a woman from a western culture could be so dedicated to a foreign culture and rise to be a priestess, there should be no doubt on how important dedication is and students should practice their assignments so as to be proficient as Wenger was in Yoruba language, culture, tradition and spirituality.

Earlier in his opening remarks, the Dean of The Faculty of Arts, Prof. Oyeronke Olademo, also extolled the virtues of the late Susan Wenger as she shared the memories of her interactions with the late Osun Priestess with the audience.

Prof. Olademo noted that the white woman who called her daughter and whom she referred to as mother was laid to rest in the kind of local fabric that she wore.

While welcoming the audience, the Head of the Department of the Performing Arts, Prof. AbdulRasheed Adeoye, disclosed that the Department renders social services to the University and even beyond and added that the story of Susan Wenger is one of the triumph of good over evil as a number of malevolent forces allied to oppose Wenger whom they saw as an intruder and usurper.

In his remarks, the 2017 Convocation Lecturer, Prof. Chris Imafidon of Oxford University also commended the team which brought the memories of Susan Wenger, known as Adunni Olorisa, to life in the dance drama and noted that coordinating an orchestra involves mathematical principles and therefore everyone aspiring for University education needs to take Mathematics seriously.