Centre for Vocational and Entrepreneurial Studies
The Centre for Entrepreneurship and Vocational Studies (CEVS) is a service unit within the Technical University, Ibadan, Oyo State. The mandate of CEVS is to warehouse and operationalize the entrepreneurship and vocational skill development of the Technical University. This is with the view of contributing to the socio-economic development process in Nigeria with particular reference to job creation and economic diversification.
The first and second sections of this document provides the background information and the philosophy of the entrepreneurship programme of CEVS respectively; the third section articulates the entrepreneurship objectives of CEVS; the fourth section presents the Mission and Vision Statements of CEVS; the fifth section highlights the recommended entrepreneurship and vocational skill development programmes of CEVS.
In Nigeria, the challenge of graduate and youth unemployment has assumed a worrisome dimension. According to the report of Federal office of Statistics. Less than 20 per cent of graduates of the school system get absorbed into the labour market annually. This situation is linked to the rapid growth and demand for western education which has resulted in the continuous over supply of graduates far beyond the demand of the labour market. Another reason that has been advanced for the increasing rate of graduate unemployment is the socio-cultural orientation of youths towards paid employment rather than self-employment; similar to this is the nature of the curriculum of the formal education system which over time has prepared graduates to be job seekers rather than job givers. Apart from this, employers of labour in Nigeria has blamed the preponderance of graduate unemployed on skill mismatch between the outputs of the formal school system and the requirements of the industries; put differently, a sizable percentage of unemployed graduates are by default unemployable in the context of the demands of the labour market. A more critical cause of graduate unemployment is dwindling fortune of the Nigerian economy, coming on the heels of over dependence on crude oil, compelling many industries with high employment generating prospects to either downsize or shut down altogether.
Nigeria is Africa’s most populous nation and leading oil producer with the second natural gas reserve in sub-Sahara Africa. This should translate into real gains and good quality of life for Nigerians; apparently, it has not. Sixty-one percent of Nigerians live in poverty, while unemployment rate rose by about thirteen percent in the last quarter of 2016. The economy still depends heavily on oil, which accounts for seventy-five percent of government revenue and ninety-five percent of export. Over the years, oil revenue has displaced more stable and sustainable revenue flow while expenditure has not been used to pursue diversification of the economy. Consequently, labour and capital tend to migrate to the oil resource sector from other productive sector, resulting in higher cost and reduced competitiveness for domestically produced goods and services thereby impeding the activities of the real sector with grievous implication on employment.
In line with the thinking across the globe, successive Nigerian’s government are increasingly realizing that the long term economic prospects of the country are good on the condition that the real sector is supported to grow. This informed the proliferating emphasis on entrepreneurship and SMEs development as catalysts for economic development and job creation by the government of Nigeria in recent times. One of the measures put in place to reinforce government’s entrepreneurship drive is the call for academic institutions in Nigeria to contribute to the economic development process through entrepreneurship education programmes. In essence, in recognition of the potential of entrepreneurship and SMEs development in reducing the problem of graduate unemployment, the Nigerian government through the National University Commission (NUC) mandated all Nigerian Universities to introduce entrepreneurship education into their academic programme in 2006.
In practice, all Nigerians tertiary institutions run one form of entrepreneurship education programme or the other with different approaches and models. Awareness for entrepreneurship education is increasing by the day and some of the youths and graduates of tertiary institutions are seriously considering the option of self-employment as a career option. Nonetheless, there appears to be a missing link; the quantum of entrepreneurship education programme in Nigeria has not produced commensurate start-ups to justify its investment and impact positively the unemployment situation in the country. Natural resources still lie idle while opportunities in the agricultural, ICT and non-oil sector remains untapped. This situation can be attributed to the nature of entrepreneurship education provided, the pattern of delivery, availability of resources or facilities and the capacity of the instructors. To achieve maximum result, the entrepreneurship education ecosystem need to be streamlined to identify, engage and develop the capacity of the major stakeholders to contribute their quota maximally and foster a productive and sustainable entrepreneurship culture and SMEs development in the Nigeria.
On assumption of office as the Executive Governor of Oyo State in 2011, His Excellency, senator Abiola Ajimobi conceived the idea of technical university (Tech-U), a unique concept of tertiary education system in Nigeria with the vision of producing a technically proficient professional with impeccable entrepreneurship skills relevant to the needs of the industries, thereby engendering sustainable job creation and employment. The university was formally recognized by the NUC on 7th December, 2012 and academic activities commences in December 2017. In pursuant of the mission of Tech-U, the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Vocational Studies was proposed and approved by the NUC as one of the take-off programmes for 2017/2018 academic session, to anchor the entrepreneurship and vocational skills development programmes of the institution. Given this background, this concept note provides a blueprint for the activities of the Centre for Entrepreneurship and Vocational Studies.
ENTREPRENEURIAL PHILOSOPHY OF THE CENTER FOR ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND VOCATIONAL STUDIES, TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY
The underlying assumptions upon which the entrepreneurial objectives and Programmes are hinged are enumerated as follows:
- SMEs are the drivers of new jobs
- Behind every new job lies the spirit of imagination and Entrepreneurship
- Entrepreneurship fosters economic growth, sustainable development and job creation
- Entrepreneurship principles, values and skills can be developed and nurtured through educational process
- Entrepreneurship Skills and attributes are required for innovation in business and enterprise expansion
- Entrepreneurs have important roles to play in fostering entrepreneurship spirit, skills and attributes
- Entrepreneurship skills and attributes can enhance the employability prospects of individuals
- Entrepreneurship skills and attributes will enhance the productivity of individuals and stand them out of the crowd in any given job
- All disciplines are commercializable in the context job creation
- Entrepreneurship education Programmes should be designed and administered according to the need of the target clientele
- Only entrepreneurial faculties will effectively deliver entrepreneurship instructions
- The capacity of lectures must be developed from time to time deliver entrepreneurship instructions
- Result oriented entrepreneurship programme must engage mentors actively in the educational process
- Entrepreneurship education will achieve better result with self-motivated students
- Use of Library & Information Science
OBJECTIVES OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME OF THE CENTER FOR ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND VOCATIONAL STUDIES
In line with the highlighted assumptions, the objectives of entrepreneurship education programme of Technical University include:
- Fostering the culture of entrepreneurship and self-employment
- Expose students to post graduation career options and opportunities inherent in their discipline
- Equipping students to start, manage and grow successful enterprises
- Providing education and technical support for the creation of new ventures
- Promoting, supporting and facilitating Job creation
- Enhancing the employability prospects of undergraduates
- Fostering creativity and innovation among undergraduates
- Discovering, nurturing and promoting entrepreneurial talents among the undergraduates of TU
- Facilitating university-industry linkages for the development of entrepreneurial capacity among undergraduates
- Facilitating international networks for entrepreneurial capacity building for staff and students of entrepreneurship programme of TU
- Promotion of primary industries through research and Programmes aimed at encouraging the exploitation and utilization of local resources
- Promoting the development of adaptable technology