The first Overseas Inter-Faculty Lectures on "Overseas Universities Collaboration:
The Prospects and Challenges" was organised by C. G Bhakta Institute of Biotechnology,
Uka Tarsadia University (India) in collaboration with University of Ilorin (Nigeria)
on 17 & 18 November 2014. It was the first of its kind to be organised by Uka Tarsadia
University (UTU). The Overseas Inter-Faculty Lectures was organized as a further
move since the University of Ilorin, Nigeria and Uka Tarsadia University, Gujarat,
India signed a MoU in March 2013 to establish collaborations in areas such as Academic
Linkages, Educational Research, Teaching Faculty and Student Exchange among others
for their mutual benefits and academic excellence. The Lectures attracted large
number of attendees across different faculties, the teaching, non teaching and students
amounting to nearly 500 participants.
The UNILORIN delegation was led by Professor A. G. Ambali (The Vice Chancellor,
University of Ilorin (UNILORIN). In his team were Professor T. Oladiji (Director,
CREDIT, UNILORIN), Prof. Mohammad O. Ibrahim (Director, Centre for International
Education, UNILORIN) and Dr Abdulrasheed Adeoye (Chairman, Academic Staff Union
of Universities, UNILORIN). Among the attendees were Mr David A. Animasaun and Mrs
Abdulkareem A. Khadijah (Teaching staff at Unilorin) who are presently conducting
research for their Ph.D. under Prof. R. Krishnamurthy's mentorship under the Faculty
Exchange Programme at Uka Tarsadia University, India.
Professor R. Krishnamurthy (Director, C. G Bhakta Institute of Biotechnology) gave
the welcome address. He gave a detailed account on how it all started and the series
of events that led to the signing of Memorandum of Understanding. He informed the
audience about the status of various projects that are being jointly conducted particularly
on Nigerian Napier Grasses, Yam varieties, Okra, Brinjal and few medicinal plants.
He also briefed the audience on the on-going prestigious collaborative project on
Plant Tissue Culture project in Nigeria. He articulated that such collaborations
should also be in between other faculties of UTU and UNILORIN. It was also mentioned
that a student (M.Sc Biotechnology) from Uka Tarsadia University is being sent to
Nigeria as a part of student exchange programme for dissertation work.
Thereafter, opening remarks were given by Dr D. R. Shah (Provost, Uka Tarsadia University,
India). In his address, he shared the significant achievements made by the University
in recent times. He also stressed the importance and future prospects of collaboration
between the Universities.
Subsequently, lectures were delivered by our Nigerian counterparts on topics such
as Collaborations in Contemporary Research, University Administration and Management,
Multidisciplinary Approaches in Research and Importance of Student/Staff Exchange
Professor A. Ambali explained how current research trends focus on the scientific
development and have provided us with many diversified fields; he emphasized the
need for collaborative environment to facilitate the knowledge dissemination. He
elucidated the role of University Administration and Management in smoothening the
Professor T. Oladiji explained Multidisciplinary Research and its Challenges and
Prospects in the current scenario. She detailed the gravity of the situation wherein
the need for multidisciplinary research is becoming more and more relevant especially
in the field of natural sciences. Her talk made the audience to ponder with the
idea of multidisciplinary research. The prominence of staff/student exchange programmes
were explained by Dr. Mohammed O. Ibrahim. His lecture included the significance
of exchange programmes where by students/staff would exchange cultural and as well
as intellectual ideas, thereby teaching and learning the values of other cultures
and traditions. He also suggested various ways of developing and consolidating further
exchange programmes between Uka Tarsadia University and University of Ilorin.
Prof. Rajashekhar Ingalhalli extended the vote of thanks.
A cultural programme organised by students of Nursing Department, Uka Tarsadia University
was presented which exhibited cultural flavour of India as well as Gujarat. The
delegates enjoyed the event and appreciated the performances. In the concluding
programme of cultural event, Dr.Abdulrasheed Adeoye from Dept of Performing Arts,
Unilorin appreciated the themes of the individual programmes as it reflected talents
of youths and the Indian tradition.
Conclusively, the Inter-Faculty lectures were fruitful in stimulating new ideas
and suggesting solutions to the current challenges faced in the field of education.
The need was felt to conduct more such lectures in order to get new insights in
the field of teaching and research.