Dominican University First Public Lecture
Faithful to her intellectual tradition, the Dominican University, Ibadan, had her maiden public lecture on the 29th of November, 2017, with, titled Mission, Anxiety and Hopes of a fledging university. The awe-inspiring lecture was delivered by Dr. Chiedozie Okoro, an associate professor of Philosophy at the University of Lagos. Mr. Gabriel Okonkwo, a lecturer of English Language at the Dominican University, was the moderator of the lecture.
At the start of his paper, Dr. Chiedozie Okoro argues that the task of a fledging university is to see how she can harmonize her mission and vision with national set goals in the midst of overbearing international challenges. He notes that universities, while acting locally, must think globally if they must achieve the internationalization of research. Dr. Chiedozie further noted that to reap the fruits of internationalization, university leaders must envision and imagine the global image through a constant rethinking and re-imagining of university education. Stake holders in the education sector should work to see that research is promoted. This is so because research is the key for effective participation in the global setting. A fledging university like ours must be a global research centre if it is to remain relevant.
The captivating speaker also insists that a fledging university must rise above teaching, and embrace research; research that is sustained by talented and highly motivated personnel who carry out their work in an atmosphere devoid of excessive external controls. He maintains that university autonomy is responsible for the magnificent results achieved by universities in Europe and America. Nevertheless, research he endorses is one that is carried out with the context of culture. Research must be about the diverse aspects of culture. Only then can a fledging university be relevant both in the local and international scenes.
In conclusion, the ultimate mission of the university in the contemporary period is not merely teaching and research, but rethinking of education, reinventing of research, and the promotion of imagination; imagination that will help in coordinating diversifies, in harmonizing approaches, in instructing hope into hopelessness, in uniting the past, present and future, and in bringing out the very best from all of humanity.
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