Chemical Engineering Students Encouraged to Focus on Innovation Based Technology
The students of Chemical Engineering Department of Covenant University have been told that transformation into high value-added products for economic growth is a key investment driver for Nigeria, which is a country endowed with a unique blend of diverse and abundant natural resources such as petroleum, gas, minerals (bauxite, coal, limestone, etc) and agriculture.
This was stated by the Guest Speaker, Professor Adesoji Adesina, at a recent Town and Gown seminar of the department where he gave a lecture with the topic, ‘University-Industry Relationship As A Driver of Innovation-Based Entrepreneurship for Sustainable Economic Development.’
Professor Adesina, who was a former Professor, School of Chemical Engineering, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia and currently the CEO, Atodatech LLC, a private Engineering Company in Pasadena, California, USA, stated that longitudinal economic growth data revealed strong positive correlation with labour and capital and negatively correlated with research and development as well as innovation. However, he said, single resource-dependency is unsustainable.
He postulated that modern era is a knowledge-based economy migrating into sustainable development, controlled by technology, innovation, management and entrepreneurship. Professor Adesina emphasised sustainability as being the nexus of innovation.
Speaking on research, the eminent scholar identified some issues in our national research approach as being patterned after colonial model, dominated by exploratory, replication and appraisal studies, instead of being driven by national priorities. “Innovation,’ he said, “was a missing motif. Research must be backed by reflection, awareness and discipline to become the cornerstone of any progressive society.”
He described innovation, as the implementation of a new or significantly improved product (goods or services); process, marketing method, organizational techniques in business practices, workplace relations or external alliances. “Every country,” he said, “needs to have national system(s) of innovation.” He tried to explain entrepreneurship as being a complex multidisciplinary terminology, encompassing faculty consultation, university-industry collaboration, intellectual property protection and technology transfer.
“Students in engineering, science, business and humanities need entrepreneurship education for competency in developing new products using new technologies, accessing new markets and practicing management of enterprises,” he stated.
In his remarks, the Head of Department, Chemical Engineering, Dr. Vincent Efeovbokhan, appreciated the guest speaker for his erudite lecture and thanked the faculty, staff and students of the department for their efforts in making the event a success.
Also present at the event were some members of the College of Engineering and members of the Department of Chemical Engineering.