Akwa Ibom State College of Education Has A Great Future
-Prof. Daniel George Udo, Provost, COE
The future of the College is great. You see when there is peace and stability, it creates the ambience for creative thoughts and with that you can think of what to do to make it more beneficial to the people as Akwa Ibom State and to the world generally.
College of Education is one place that we cannot afford to toy with because all of us have kids. And very little kids can be best taken care of by the NCE teachers and those NCE teachers are produced of Colleges of Education. Although, in some quarters, they’re trying to de-emphasize NCE certificate but you find out that the NCE certificate is the foundation. No man would afford to cut off the fingers, simply because he has learnt to eat with fork and spoon. The NCE represents the natural fingers; where the fork and the spoon can be held. So, you hold the fork, you hold the spoon and then you manipulate their way about into the mouth with the hands (the fingers). That I the way I describe the NCE programme, it’s the foundation.
This College is the only training institution capable of training teachers. As I speak to you, I have very little kids at home and it takes a lot of patience and understanding to be able to teach them one thing for them to understand. I remember when my son in the nursery school wanted to do his homework. Then I was teaching at the university and I was trying to show him how to do the mathematics. He said, “Oh daddy, you don’t even know anything, give me my book; when my mummy comes back she will come and show me what to do.” That experience taught me a great difference between the NCE and others.
So, we have a great future. This College is moving from strength to strength and I want to seize this opportunity to thank the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Governor Umo Eno. You see, why I wanted to begin which Governor Udom Emmanuel is because I came in here in 2019 under Governor Udom Emmanuel and he taught me one thing which I can never forget; and I see the manifestation of that teaching every day in this College. He said that, “Result is the best answer to insults.”
Even in this College, there are some people that thought that we were not going to have accreditation. In fact, they even wrote letters that the College has partial accreditation, but when the result came out, it answered all the insults and I don’t even have need to respond to those insults.
So, this is when we look at the future of the College, it’s going from strength to strength and it’s a very great future. The ambience is free, 2019 till date there has been no disruption of academic calendar, but this is the same College that we use to have disruption almost every other month, sometimes twice or trice in a single semester. So, I can see that God is with us and the power is not from us, neither is the strength from us, is God that shows mercy.
We can see steady progress, development, going from strength to strength, we are trying to overcome some of those challenges and what we see is the result that cancels insults.
The college has done a lot talking about good results, if you had listen carefully to my address , you’ll recall that there was a time I said that this administration has achieved full accreditation for the department of home economics, home economics is capital intensive-based department. You have to have enough cooking materials, you have to have where they store all the things they use to cook.
That department could not even be presented for accreditation throughout the past administrations in the College. During the accreditation, we wrote to His Excellency, Governor Udom Emmanuel, was on the saddle that time and he promptly responded with financial support through which we were able to maintain what is called Practicum; like the warehouse, the stronghold of Home Economics department. Home Economics department is highly necessary in an institution like this.
And when we are done with that it will be open to the public, because there is nothing you do in the classroom, if you don’t take it to the town it doesn’t earn the benefit of spending time in the classroom. So, this is where there is that synergy between the town and the gown.
What we are also looking at doing in the school of technical education, which is vast and we want to fully develop it. If you look around the campus, you have some Tetfund projects going on. Now, if we had technical education working in its full capacity, contractors wouldn’t be buying blocks; we would be moulding the blocked here and delivering to them. So, we want to develop the technical education fully so that the block moulding capacity will be working at maximum level. Also, the automobile, the electrical, the welding and the carpentry would be working maximally, so that while the students are learning, they are also serving the public. It is in offering the service to the public that they do the practical aspects of their learning.
These things work well when you have the kind of support that this College is currently enjoying from the State Government. If we didn’t have that support, it couldn’t have been possible for us to secure 100% accreditation in this College.
The students will be well-equipped intellectually and with motto skills, they will also acquire skills that by the time they graduate, they should be able to support themselves and not only to look unto Government to provide jobs.
So my advice to the students is take your studies seriously, whatever the lecturers are giving you, don’t see it as punishment, see it as an opportunity to learn, to develop themselves.