Igbojaiye, Scholars Rise As Ajayi Assumes Office As Tech-U VC
The First Technical University, Ibadan, received an unprecedented caliber and a number of people from Igbojaiye, an agrarian town in Oyo north on Monday.
Led by the Olugbo of Igbojaiye, and his chiefs, the town had risen to celebrate one of their illustrious sons, Professor Adesola Ajayi, who was inaugurated as the second Vice-Chancellor of the university.
The people are happy that Ajayi, a professor of crop science, has done the town honor, submitting himself to the process of selecting the VC and eventually emerging the choice.
The event was, however, a formal one as Ajayi got robbed, with government officials, many scholars, and other stakeholders present.
Among them were the Oyo State Head of Service, Mrs. Ololade Agboola; the pioneer VC, Professor Ayobami Salami; His wife and that of Ajayi, Professor Abiodun Salami; and Mrs. Ibiyemi Ajayi;
Also present were the Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Professor Iyiola Tella; the Registrar, Mrs. Olayinka Balogun; and the Bursar of the institution, Pastor Kehinde Olatokun.
Other egg heads at the ceremony were Professor Ibe Obi, who taught Ajayi some of his other former teachers were there too – Professors Charles Akanbi, Aderemi Ogunfowokan, OO Awotoye, Steven Ojo, Surajudeen Ajadi and Adebayo Mosobalaje.
In his address, In his address, Ajayi thanked all the people and institutions that have positively affected his personal and professional life. These include his mother, who was also present, teachers, relatives, and wife who, he said, sacrificed her plan to study medicine for him to prosecute his postgraduate program.
The new VC was full of praise for Professor Salami for having been his mentor and for having believed in him, Ajayi promised to work harder and creatively to expand the success the university had recorded.
He unfolded a mission statement targeting a strategic improvement on the solid foundation laid by Salami.
He said, “The thrust of this five-year (2022-2027) mission statement is to grow the university by building on the solid foundation, the glorious beginning, and the trajectory of achievements of the pioneer management of the First Technical University (Tech-U), 2017-2022. The Management did not spare effort in ensuring that the institution has the full complement of what a university should have and indeed a solid foundation was laid such that subsequent Management needs only to grow and expand on the existing structures that have been established.
“There will be further infrastructural Development to expand facilities for staff and students and thereby support the attainment of the objectives of the university by Upscaling physical infrastructure and other service facilities to match evolving campus demography, adherence to the master plan while situating new buildings and landscaping; seeking funding and private sector partnerships to undertake/donate building projects across the University campus; and developing and implementing a sustainable environmental program to maintain and further enhance the beauty of the University estate.”
The Igbojaiye, Oyo State-born scholar also promised the facilitation of ‘Tech Start-ups’ and an operational Industrial Park to make Tech-U a hub for technology incubation and innovation by encouraging multidisciplinary collaboration across faculties and Departments and institutions, organizing annual technology exhibitions; establishing of a walk-in business hub for training, research and demonstrations for students and non-students as a hub to mentor start-ups and advance ideas with commercial potential. It will also enable a learning environment steeped in innovation and characterized by discovery, collaboration, inquiry, and engagement.”
Salami described the day as one of the happiest days of his life as, according to him, he had left the university in the hands of a worthy successor.
He said, “When we started this university, Professor Ajayi was with me. He worked 26 hours a day to see that the dream behind the university is realized. I am therefore happy that he is the one taking over, although he had to go through a keen competition to get the job. Success without a successor is a failure, that is why I am exceptionally glad to witness today’s ceremony.”
Salami solicited the support of the management and staff for Ajayi so that there would continue to progress.
Earlier, the Registrar, Mrs. Olayinka Balogun, described the transition between Salami and Ajayi as the best Tech-U could pray for.
Balogun said in her opening remarks, “History will indeed be kind to Professor Salami and in years to come, he will be mentioned among pioneers, game-changers, and men who laid foundations for great and mighty things to flourish. I mean the likes of Professors Kenneth Onwuka Dike, Hezekiah Oluwasanmi, and our dearly beloved Oyewusi Ibidapo-Obe.
“What better confirms his sterling leadership is that a man who worked with him has been found worthy of stepping into his shoes? As you already know, the other memorable event of today is that the second Vice-Chancellor in the history of Tech-U, Professor Adesola Ajayi, will be inaugurated before our very eyes.
There is no denying the fact that he is a scholar of genuine quality, a stickler for excellence, and a first-class brain. Those who know him well enough will readily attest to his significant experience in tertiary education administration and undiluted commitment to the development of First Technical University, Ibadan.”