Provost, Dr A. Yusuf


nothing but a springboard

It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to this epoch-making event. This event is considered extremely paramount due to the pride of place which learning occupies in our personal and corporate lives. As we all know that, apart from our colleagues in the legal profession, who believed they are learned, every other profession believes the continuous nature of learning, not to talk of the mother of all human endeavor. Learning to us in the academic is from the point of conception to grave – the termination of our sojourn on earth. It, therefore, gives me the joy to be in this august gathering of intellectuals, under the exposé of a renowned academics – one of our own “omobowale.” Perhaps, I should inform new entrants and our admirable guests who may not be conversant. The guest speaker of today, once had a touch of this citadel of learning; as she was once a staff of the College before we loaned her on a permanent basis to Unilorin, the Better by far University. Today you are in a Better by Excellence College.

In furtherance of the assertion as mentioned earlier, convocation lecture is one of the most prominent milestones of the 21st century. Without it, one may be accused of falling short of the recognised global best practice of this academic exercise as any convocation without it will be termed a mere jamboree. The title of this convocation lecture without pre-empting the guest speaker is “Teacher Education in the 21st Century: Wither Nigerian Colleges of Education?” I must appreciate the guest speaker and the ceremonials committee for choosing to discuss this apt and timely theme with this community. This topic of discourse is so important that its effect when put in a proper perspective, would resonate beyond this geographical space.

You would agree with me that, every academic that is worth its salt should be worried about the despicable place which colleges of education occupy in the scheme of things, especially in our clime. Before this recent time, we all testify to the tremendous impact which colleges of education contribute to our educational system. It was this significance that, earned the colleges the position of being the minimal prerequisite for the teacher in the educational industry. Perhaps due to the kid-gloves with which we treat education as a nation, the fortune of education in this part is nosediving and the impact is felt most in our colleges of Education among which Kwara State College of Education, Ilorin is not an exemption. This downward trend is mostly manifest in the perception of people about education, the extent of direct enrolment, prestige, and so on.

Prior to our assumption of office, Kwara State College of Education was seen as desolate ground due to the impression some of us created in the minds of the members of the community. It was so bad that virtually everything in the College was seen as substandard to the extent that some members of this academic community were also tacitly initiated into this warped assumption.

With the perception of people in our mind, we took a very critical decision to return the College to the good old days when it was the pride of Kwara State. The time in the annals of the State where an average man would at a point in time want to either have a touch of the College or at least have a filial or nuptial connection with the College. At a point, when we realized the enormity of the herculean task ahead, we, of course, felt inundated with the enormity but we opted to take on the challenge, an attempt to revamp the College. Hence, we christened our mission, the New Direction.

It is noteworthy that, our effort towards revamping the College has been well received from far and wide, most especially, by those that matter, mostly the staff and students. Just this morning, we observed that our ranking has also being recognized across the globe with the five-point leap of the college from an about 23th position some seven months ago to 17th position. By this epoch-making event- convocation ceremony, we have had the commitment of notable alumnus of the College to partner with the management to rebuild the institution that has made a very significant contribution to their career development. In addition to this, quite some well-meaning Nigerians both corporate, and private capacities have also joined in catapulting our dream of making the College, the centre of excellence of Kwara, a reality.

Just like the book of Proverb stated that “as a man thinketh in his heart, so he is”, we have undertaken to redirect our orientation (both staff and students), we’ve changed our ways of doing things, so as to place us at the right spot on the world map of standard of doing things. We are resolute to take the college to an enviable height among world-class colleges of education and with this lecture coming at this time, we are assured that our giant's stride will not only take us our Eldorado but it will take us to a level of pride that we cannot imagine.

God bless you
God bless Kwara State College of Education
God bless Kwara State
God bless Federal Republic of Nigeria.