The best-graduating student of the 2022/2023 set of Achievers University, Owo, Ondo State, Miss Rebecca Adama, said she was labelled an unintelligent student during her secondary school education until she encouraged herself to aim for success.
Adama stated this at the 13th Convocation and 16th Foundation Anniversary of the university in Owo.
“Growing up, I was not an exceptional student and I had this teacher back then, who saw me as a dullard and talked me down. The teacher told me that I could not answer a particular question asked because it was meant for intelligent students.
“Before I got to university, I lost my mother. And my siblings and I said we must be diligent and work harder. So, with the help of God, with diligence and hard work, I am what I am today.
“Getting into the higher institution, it was not one of my goals to be among the best students because I didn’t think of it at all but I gave due diligence to my studies and it has paid off now.
“I have come to realise that there are no special people, the result is the same when the principles are right. Whatever your hands find to do, do it with all your might,” she said.
Adama, a graduate of law with a Cumulative Gross Point Average (CGPA) of 4.87, asked her colleagues to put diligence in the centre of their various endeavours in life.
The Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of the governing Council of the university, Dr Bode Ayorinde, said the institution had given the graduands the tools not only to aim high but, very importantly, to fly and get to the very top of the mountain.
“We have given our students the key to unlock doors of opportunities that abound in the world out there. No doubt, the periods of study, ranging from 18 months for the Master’s degree, to four or five years for the undergraduate students, have been very tasking but equally impactful,” he said.
Ayorinde admonished the graduates to demonstrate the leadership attributes imbibed as students of the university, urging them to exhibit good conduct in their walks of life.
The pro-chancellor, who appreciated parents and guardians for allowing their children and wards to have a higher and sound education in the institution, promised that the university would continue to provide a very serene and aesthetically beautiful campus and other ancillary services to make teaching and learning conducive.
He promised that the institution’s council, under his chairmanship, would continue to encourage academic staff to embark on innovative, impactful and result-oriented research towards giving the university the much-needed global visibility and providing solutions to the myriads of problems in society.
Ayorinde noted that the management of the university had taken the welfare of its staff and students as a priority for the past 16 years, with all salaries and wages paid.
According to him, the university has successfully implemented the contributory pension scheme and the university has approved and implemented palliatives to all categories of staff to cushion the effect of oil subsidy removal.
Also, the Acting Vice Chancellor of the university, Prof. Omolola Irinoye, would award degrees to 554 graduates with 520 first-degree graduates and 34 with postgraduate degrees.
Irinoye said that of the graduating class, 37 got First Class, 259 had Second Class Upper Division; 195 were in Second Class Lower Division, and 27 had Third Class Honour.
The VC explained that the institution had 27 undergraduate and 10 postgraduate degree programmes, adding that it would continue to pursue with vigour its academic activities in teaching, research and community service.
According to her, the university has received permission to run 11 new academic programmes, including Medicine and Surgery, making its undergraduate degree programmes to be 38.
Irinoye said that for the 2023/2024 academic session, the university’s council had made provision for scholarships to many young people to make education accessible to them.
“Students are offered 100 per cent tuition-free scholarships for 15 programmes in the College of Natural and Applied Sciences and College of Social and Management Sciences.
“Students are offered 80 per cent tuition-free in 11 other programmes in the Faculty of Health Sciences, College of Natural and Applied Sciences and College of Social and Management Sciences.
“Also, students in all the seven engineering programmes are given 65 per cent tuition-free scholarships,” she said.
The VC encouraged parents and potential students to consider the tuition-free programmes to avoid wasting years of sitting at home for many young people who met the JAMB cut-off scores for universities.
According to her, all academic programmes in the school are fully accredited by the National Universities Commission ( NUC).
At the convocation ceremony, honorary doctorate awards were conferred on the Registrar, Nursing and Midwifery Council of Nigeria, Dr Faruk Abubakar; the former Attorney-General and Commissioner of Justice in Ondo State, Mrs Olajumoke Anifowoshe and the Executive Director, Niger Delta Power Holding Company of Nigeria, Mr Ifeoluwa Oyedele.