Worried stiff about the academic performance of its students, the University of Abuja is trying to examine the phenomenon by looking into the past eight years. Already, the University Senate has set up a 13-man Committee with Professor M.A. Maisamari, the Dean of the Faculty of Education to chair the investigation spanning academic performance of students of the University between 2008 and 2015. The Senate took the decision at its 159th regular meeting on July 27th, 2016.
When the Committee gets cracking, it would interest itself in, among others, the distribution of class of degrees of graduands for each academic programme ran by the university within the period, the admission process, campus life, students’ reading culture, personal study time, library usage, students involvement in distractive activities and the value systems. The Committee is also to assess teaching at the institution including depth of coverage, understanding, attendance at lectures, lecture venues, quality of examination marking scheme, the state of facilities and infrastructure including physical and electronic. Finally, the committee’s gaze will stretch to the quality of the lectures bearing in mind subject matter mastery, specialization, workload on lecturers, adequacy of staff and environmental factors. The university is expecting the committee to identify the lapses in all cases.
Observers situate the investigation within the sweeping changes being introduced in the university as part of attempts at attaining and running a university in the capital city. The University of Abuja has had a unique difficulty of being such a university, obviously a function of diversity of factors. Their fortunes appear to have been changing with the regime of Professor Michael Adikwu, its new Vice-Chancellor.
In apparent notice of its changing fortunes, General Ibrahim Badamasi Babangida, former President and the first Visitor to the university charged its Governing Council not to relent on the path of making it one of the greatest institutions in the world. Babangida told members of the Council and Management who paid him a courtesy call at his residence in Minna how impressed with by the current level of development at the University but that the authorities should forge ahead until the university achieved world status.
“It was our own creation. It is always of interest for me to know how the University is doing,” the former President said, adding that “I want to say that I am most impressed by the development that is currently going on in the University. “ I am glad that you are doing well, I am glad that it is one of the universities that I was the pioneer Visitor”, the former President said stressing that he always felt proud whenever the University was being discussed.
He, therefore, charged the Governing Council not to relent in the effort to put the institution on a higher pedestal while thanking the delegation for the visit which was to felicitate with him on his 75th birthday and to commiserate and to wish him well on the health challenges he had faced. According to the leader of the delegation, Dr. Mahe Dange, the Yeriman Sokoto, the University of Abuja owed the former President a lot being one of the architects of its coming into existence.
He said that the visit was an opportunity to officially pay compliments to the former President for his foresight in according a dual status to the University which was serving the federal capital territory and the nation well in advancing the frontiers of learning and fostering national unity.