4. Mr. Gboyega Aladegbami - Interim President, SFB branch, Great Ife Alumni Association, Oakland CA
5. Mr. Debo Sodipo - Foundation Member, SFB branch, Great Ife Alumni Association, Oakland CA
6. Mr. Yomi Ogunrinola - Foundation Member, SFB branch, Great Ife Alumni Association, Oakland CA
7. Mrs. Lola Ogunrinola - Foundation Member, SFB branch, Great Ife Alumni Association, Oakland CA
8. Mr. Adeolu Esho - President, Great Ife Alumni association Inc. USA, DFW Branch, Grand Prairie TX
9. Dr. Dapo Afolabi - Member, Great Ife Alumni association Inc. USA, DFW Branch, Forth Worth TX
10. Mr. Tokunbo Adejuyigbe - Member, Great Ife Alumni association Inc. USA, DFW Branch, Plano TX
11. Mrs. Oluyemi Koyejo - Former President, Great Ife Alumni Association Inc. USA, Houston Branch, Houston TX
12. Mr. Olugbenga Agboola - President, Great Ife Alumni Association Inc. USA, Houston Branch, Houston TX
The meeting started about 9.05 CST, and was moderated by Gbenga Agboola.
In his introductory remarks, Gbenga Agboola informed the VC that there are four (4) key areas that the Houston members would like him to comment upon. They are;
a) The current increased occurrences of student crises - The University side of the matter
b) The current state of University administrators & lecturers versus students relationship
c) The current situation with transcripts requests administration by the University.
d) The University administration’s plans to support and partner with the Alumni in the development of the University.
The VC in his opening address on the state of our alma mater responded to all the above matters. The summary of his responses below;
a) He gave a chronology of the student crises and informed that he inherited the problem from the previous two VC administrations. He assured that the University administration is confident that they have put a permanent solution in place to prevent the reoccurrence of the student crises.
b) The current academic and administrative staff of the University are very professional and supportive of his efforts to turn the situation around for the better in the University relations.
c) The transcript request problem will be resolved within the next one year.
d) The University admin have a cordial and working relationship with the alumni body. The National president is a sitting member of the University governing council, and he and his executive council have been very supportive of our actions and activities. They have been proactive on the students’ problem.
The Q & A session summary follows;
Deolu Esho: What is the status of the NUC accreditation of the Law Faculty?
VC: The faculty is now partially accredited by NUC, hence we are able to admit students into the 100 level this year and the University is working towards full accreditation next year by addressing the outstanding problems of staff quality and having a moot court of acceptable standard.
UPDATE!!! November 26, 2007 - Retired Justice Onalaja (current Chairman, governing board of the Nigeria Law school) has generously promised to donate a standard Moot Court to the Great Ife Law department.
Dapo Afolabi: What is the procedure for shipping materials/equipment donations to the University? He narrated his current ordeal in the shipment of a container load of dialysis equipments to OAUTH.
VC: Involve the University authorities as early as possible in the donation process, preferably through the alumni association if possible. In the present case, we shall get to understand what problem is really causing the delay and assist appropriately.
Dapo Williams: Is there any plan by the University to prevent the extension of medical degree student’s years of study, due to the incessant student crises?
VC: There is a current provision of hostel accommodations and Lecture Theater at the OAUTHC for clinical students at OAUTH premises, thereby shielding them away from the campus crises. The accommodation facilities are going to be expanded to accommodate more medical students in future.
Bolaji Aluko: Three part questions & comment-
a) What is the level of funding for academic research in the University.
b) What is the level of gap in actual funding from FG and University expenditure?
c) University should develop a robust universal alumni database.
VC’s responses to the above:
a) The level of funding for research by the FG is paltry and dwindling fast. The University has relied more on external international funding like the Carnegie CORPORATION and Ford Foundations.
b) The same answer above applies to the big gap in funding by the FG.
c) The university has established a professionally manned Alumni Relations Office and Advancement Office, and they have collected a sizable amount of alumni database. Efforts are still ongoing in this aspect.
Yemi Koyejo: What is the University doing to cope with the funding gap from FG?
VC: Establishing revenue yielding ventures like the OAU Business School. Also attracting institutional donors like the UNITED BANK FOR AFRICA, First Bank, Central Bank and Intercontinental Bank that have contributed or planning to contribute to the development of the university infrastructure.
Debo Sodipo: Three part questions & comment -
a) The Alumni should work towards the establishment of a robust endowment fund for the development of the University, as is the practice in all successful Universities in the world.
b) Does the University have development plans and what is the range?
c) Is there a master plan for the University and is there coordination between the development planning and the mater planning for the University?
VC’s responses to the above:
a) The University welcomes any partnership with the alumni on the development of the University. VC is committed to attending the next International Reunion in SFB, CA in 2008.
b) The University has a 5-year development/STRATEGIC plan. The current one ends next year, and work has commenced on the next plan from 2009-2013.
c) The original master physical planning map of the University is being rigorously followed in the development of the University structures. Again work has commenced on a comprehensive review of the master plan to guide the university’s physical development in the next 20 years.
Yomi Ogunrinola: The University administration should work towards a comprehensive development and improvement plan for the University system.
VC’s closing remarks:
He thanked everyone for participating in the teleconference and the invaluable contributions made by all alumni. He re-stated his commitment and determination to move the University to the next level up, especially as an alumnus himself. He welcomed further one-to-one discussions on the phone before his departure back to Nigeria.
Meeting ended about 10.45pm CST.
Report by Gbenga Agboola