Take Full Responsibility for Your Future, Dr Oyedepo Admonishes Graduating Students
The Chancellor and Chairman, Board of Regents, Covenant University, Dr David O. Oyedepo, has urged the new graduates of the University to get out of their nest to guard against the destruction of their colourful future. He advised them to honour their parents for their unfathomable investments in providing quality education through their hard work and sacrifices.
Dr Oyedepo, who tasked the graduands to strive to do their parents proud by taking full responsibility for the future they desired to live in, gave the warning on Friday, May 21, 2021, at the 15th Convocation Ceremony of Covenant University held at the University Chapel in Ota, Ogun State.
While delivering his address titled 'A Wake-up Call to a Generation on the Wrong Side of History, the Chancellor lamented what he described as a "playboy generation", where young people consumed a lot of garbage through the social media platform. He stated that Cybercrime had been increasing globally, as many youths hated the word "Work".
According to the Chancellor, many young people were pursuing programmes and running courses that had no bearing on the future they looked forward to having, with the majority not looking forward to any future at all.
"In all generations, Giants are products of visions, and heroes are products of sacrificial engagements in the running with the vision. No one has a place in destiny without a vision; No one can secure the fulfilment of vision without giving it a run of his life," he submitted.
He, however, sent a wake-up call to an army of youths, who must wake up to take full responsibility, to seek a vision for their lives because no one arrived at a future he could not see (Genesis 13:14-15). He added that they should prepare to pursue their visions to full realisation because no one arrived at a future he was not prepared for (2 Chronicles 27:6).
Dr Oyedepo charged parents and guardians of the graduating students to desist from over-pampering their wards; rather, they must be allowed to go out to the air or die as eaglets in the nest. He advised the parents and guardians to enable their wards to develop their wings, with many soaring much higher than their parents.
The Keynote Speaker and Group Chief Executive Officer, eTranzact Global, Dr Valentine Obi, warned education providers on the need to be smarter and more strategic in delivering education in the 21st century. He stated that advances in computing and communication technologies have had and would continue to impact society and affect almost every occupation profoundly.
Dr Obi, who spoke on the theme of the 15th Convocation titled 'Repositioning Higher Education in Africa: Building Reputation Gaps in African Universities', said the world was in the midst of a transformation catalysed by a rapid acceleration of digital technologies, including unprecedented access to computation and data, the scale, scope and pace of which was unusual in human history.
While stating that the first big disruption in higher education started in 2011 with the announcement of massive open online courses (MOOC) taught at Stanford University, Dr Obi reckoned it was an eye-opener. He said the world became fully aware of the different way to educate their teaming population. "Coursera, edX, Udacity, have all started to develop courses, using new methods of data gathering, so every single learner that they have, is generating big data," he added.
According to the Keynote Speaker, the University faced a world in which the Internet had knowledge available for free, with any student able to go anywhere to find any information. "Truth is that Universities are not anymore in the business of providing information. Universities are supposed to be telling people how to interpret information and working with them to understand their world. And yet, these new courses, which are powered by really excellent machine learning, are doing precisely that," he explained.
Dr Obi advised that educators must live ready, re-learn a couple of things if they have to, to be part of the new chapter.
A total of 1,664 Bachelor and 254 Higher Degrees were conferred on persons, who had been found worthy in character and in learning at the occasion, where the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Abiodun H. Adebayo, in his address, said Covenant was committed to making her graduates expert thinkers, leader-managers, and super-resourceful technocrats in all fields of human endeavour.
He posited that the performance of the University's graduates in the world of work had consistently validated this commitment. "Our methodology for developing entrepreneurially minded students had witnessed the rise of viable startups having global identities. Examples include Softcom, ThriveAgric, PiggyVest, KoraPay, Cloudware Technologies Inc., Agrorite.com, Social Prefect Tours, et cetera," said the Vice-Chancellor.
Professor Adebayo said that employers' feedback on the University's employed graduates attested their great character and skill in the workplace. He said this was validated with the 7th African Quality Achievement Awards, initiated by The African Quality Institute, recently selecting Covenant as the winner of the 2021 "Africa's Best World Class Quality Education Private University of the Decade."
He said that the publication profile of the University had continued to grow. "According to the recent computations by SciVal, which covers publications from 2015 to 2021, 50% of the top 500 authors in Nigeria by publication volume are Covenant faculty. In addition, an analysis of Covenant on Elsevier (SciVal & Scopus) as of May 11, 2021, shows that in the last five years, our scholarly output has been 5,526; citation count 21,733; topics 2,077; and authors 3,073," Professor Adebayo stated.
Also present at the event were the Vice-President (Education). Living Faith Church Worldwide, Pastor (Mrs) Faith Oyedepo; members of the Board of Regents; Registrar, Covenant University, Dr Oluwasegun Omidiora and other members of Management; members of the University Senate; representative of the Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission, Engr. Kayode Odedina; visiting Vice-Chancellors and Registrars; and other distinguished guests.