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STRATEGIC DEVELOPMENT PLAN FOR RE-CREATION IMO STATE UNIVERSITY OWERRI, NIGERIA
PROFESSOR B. E. B. NWOKE
B.Sc. (Hons); MSc. PhD (Jos); OND (IMT): FRSTMH (UK); FPPSN (Nig)
Professor of Public Health Parasitology & Entomology
Dept. of Animal & Environmental Biology
Imo State University Owerri
We shall work with the Government, Governing Council, Senate, staff, students and all stakeholders in a strategic, synergistic and catalytic manner to recreate the Imo State University into a world class institution and strategic policy centre where superior academic and administrative standards will be nurtured and sustained; where there is discipline (staff and students), mutual respect for one another and respect for constituted authorities and regulations. To achieve this, I shall serve as a symbol of collective and inspirational leadership; provide qualitative leadership by example in line with the principles of democracy and rule of law; being transparent and honest; ensuring fair play, exhibit financial discipline and transparency as well as judicious use of resources; strict observance of due process, justice, equity and dedication to the realization of the objectives for which the University was established. We shall work in harmony with all stakeholders to lead, mobilize and inspire both academic and non-academic colleagues as well as students to recreate Imo State University as a first class University. YES, WE CAN!
THE PURPOSE OF UNIVERSITY
In 1981, the Governor of Imo State, Chief S. O. Mbakwe PhD (of blessed memory) and the State Executive Council established the Imo State University by Imo State University Law No 4 of 1981 passed by the then Imo State House of Assembly. It started as a multi-campus Institution, with two temporary sites located at Madonna High School, Etiti and Ngwa High School Aba. In 1985, the Military Governor of Imo state, Major-General Ike Nwachukwu (Rtd) led administration amended the University Law by Edict 27 of 1985 of Imo State and relocated the Imo State University to Okigwe in 1986. The law was further amended by another Edict in 1988.
With the creation of Abia State out of the former Imo State in 1991, the facilities of Imo State University Okigwe were ceded to Abia State. With the loss of the University to Abia State, the then Governor of Imo State, Chief Senator Evan Enwerem (of blessed memory), realizing that the new Imo State had no University, fell back on the original instrument that set up the University and relocated the Imo State University to Owerri by Imo State University Law No 2 of 1992. In 2004, the Imo State House of Assembly further amended the University Law, which is now known as Imo State University Law No 5 of 2004.
PHILOSOPHY AND ASPIRATION OF IMO STATE UNIVERSITY
According to the Law establishing the Imo State University, “it shall be the object, philosophy and aspiration of the University to encourage the advancement of learning in Imo State of Nigeria in particular and Nigeria in general and to hold out to all persons, without distinction of race, creed, or sex the opportunity of acquiring higher education.”
VISION OF IMO STATE UNIVERSITY
“Within the ambit of its legislative and conventionally understood mandate, which is to extend higher education to all qualified persons, Imo State University has set for itself the target of becoming a first class University. It is determined to promote academic pursuits to the highest possible standard while retaining community service as one of the cornerstones of its raison d’ etre.”
MY MISSION STATEMENT FOR IMO STATE UNIVERSITY
Considering the purpose of establishing universities, and the Vision, Philosophy and Aspirations of Imo State University as enunciated by the founding fathers, and having been a staff of the University from its inception, in 1981, till now (being part of its growth, development and dynamics), my MISSION for the University in the 21st century is to:
Provide and promote high quality education and training, encourage first class learning, research and innovations; ensure the publication and dissemination of results of such academic and professional contributions as well as provide appropriate community services to Imo people in particular and Nigerians and humanity in general through the creation of industrial harmony and effective partnership with governments, organizations and institutions, and individuals in line with the socioeconomic, cultural and political needs of our people.
Accordingly, my objective will be to create a peaceful and sustainable academic environment to train disciplined and self-reliant men and women who will provide qualitative leadership and support in governance, commerce and industry, science and technology, agriculture, education, medicine, law and in all other facets of human endeavour for the development of Imo State, Nigeria and the global community.
To actualize this mission, University management under my leadership shall:
By ensuring affirmative action policies, it is my mission and desire to create an enabling and conducive environment for the pursuit of learning and acquisition of higher education as are appropriate for a university of the highest standing in the 21st century. To achieve this, I shall serve as a symbol of collective leadership; provide qualitative leadership by example and in line with the basic tenets of democracy and rule of law; being transparent and honest; ensuring due process, fair play, justice, equity and dedication to the realization of the objectives for which the University was established.
In addition, we shall re-create Imo State University as an intellectual powerhouse and a strategic policy centre in the 21st century, where there is industrial harmony and reward for hard work and excellence. And without sacrificing academic and professional standards, we shall develop and implement staff a CODE OF CONDUCT to enhance discipline and create a University where there is mutual respect for one another and respect for constituted authorities and regulations; and where superior academic and administrative standards are nurtured and encouraged. These will enable us re-establish a distinct university culture that will provide and promote high quality education and learning.
ACADEMIC ORGANIZATION AND PROGRAMMES
Currently, the Imo State University is organized into eleven Faculties, School of Postgraduate Studies, and five Centres [Centre for Development Studies, Centre for Igbo Studies, Centre for Population Studies, Centre for Women and Gender Studies and Centre for Extra-moral and Pre-degree Studies (CEPS)]. Other academic and cognate units are: General Studies, Academic Planning, Institute of Continued Education Programmes (ICEP), Student Affairs, Information Technology (IT) Directorate, Admissions Directorate, and Students Industrial Work Experience Scheme (SIWES).
In the 21st century, we shall consolidate the Faculty/Departmental system because it gives us the opportunity for greater efficiency in the management of academic disciplines. It also allows for use of (our) common academic facilities and staff in related disciplines.
The present organizational structures of the Registry, Bursary, Library and Physical Planning/Works as well as other Departments in the University have successfully served their purpose for the pioneering period. In the 21st century, we shall re-structure these Departments to reflect what obtains in other institutions of higher learning without losing sight of the Imo State University law, and the National Universities Commission (NUC) requirements. We will ensure that the career structures of these Departments are well defined and spelt out. In addition, we will ensure that the operations of these Departments/Units are computerized to enhance their efficiency.
At the end of the first NUC accreditation of the Imo State University in 1999, we were ranked the best State University and one of the best nine universities in the country. Similarly, the Law graduates of Imo State University were the best at the Nigeria Law School. Our Science faculty was ranked as one of the best five Science faculties out of 48 universities assessed. We shall recreate and sustain these massive academic achievements in my mission transform Imo State University as one of the best 100 universities in Africa.
STAFF AND STAFFING
The noble objective of providing specialized, distinct and qualitative undergraduate and postgraduate education for our youths is dependent on the quality of staff. Against this background, we shall take steps to systematically improve on our staff strength. To achieve this, we shall endeavour to retain, attract and recruit outstanding and experienced colleagues (academic and non-academic). In addition, we are going to commence our staff development programme whereby disciplines with adequate staff strength and facilities will be encouraged and supported to mount PhD programmes. This will enable us train our colleagues. Furthermore, we will create enabling conditions for other colleagues to pursue their doctoral degrees as well as post-doctoral fellowships in other universities. We shall also organize regular workshops and seminars for staff to recreate and engender the university culture, research and development and information technology (IT)
For Imo State University to remain competitive and be able to retain and attract quality staff, as well as sustain industrial harmony, we shall ensure institutional and personal commitment to the welfare of staff – creating the enabling environment for staff to carry out the programmes of the University. To achieve this, we shall:
Universities are established for balanced education and training, and welfare of our youths (the students) culminating in the development of the “total man”. The success of this objective is determined primarily by how well we develop these students – physically, intellectually, morally and psychologically. Our students like their contemporaries world over are young adolescents with peculiar needs and social experiences. In the 21st century, our mission shall be to continue to support these students in the course of their training to be better equipped to successfully face the challenges and ambiguities of life. Accordingly, it is my mission to consolidate and sustain the gains so far made to improve the education and welfare of our students. In doing this, we shall address the following issues:
FACILITIES AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Nineteen (19) years after the re-location of the Imo State University, the population of both staff and students has tremendously grown. This has led to serious pressure on the existing infrastructural facilities and services in the University. To meet up with the demands associated with this growth, we shall undertake the following measures:
The university library is the single largest academic resource for both students and staff. This explains why it has often been described as the academic “heart” of a university. No university can therefore rise above the status of her library. In order to sustain her as information provider, an academic library must:
What we shall do to improve the Library services
FUNDS AND FUNDING
At the time of the re-location of the University in 1992, “both the Government and the University made no preparations in terms of physical planning and establishing a sustainable funding formula. Accordingly, funding and development of infrastructure was based solely on the Government’s monthly subvention.” However, in course of the growth and development of the University, it has become clear that Government alone cannot fund education in the State. This background therefore informed the decision of the previous University Council to launch an Endowment Fund for the University. In addition to school fees and sundry charges, the management of the University has also continued to make efforts to generate supplementary income through community service/projects such as Distance Education Learning, Extra-mural Studies and Sandwich programmes.
It is our mission to increase, diversify and sustain funding sources and funding strategies. These should include but are not limited to:
RESEARCH, DEVELOPMENT AND INNOVATIONS (RD&I)
One of the major roles of a University is to carry out research, development and innovations (RD&I) aimed at identifying and solving the needs of humanity. In fact, any university or lecturer that is not involved in substantial research and development and scholarship is not only irrelevant but also moribund and sterile.
In this regards, one of our cardinal mission is to create a sustainable enabling environment in the University in which lecturers and students will be stimulated to carry out operational and classical research studies. Such studies should be capable of addressing the challenges associated with the physical, economic, socio-cultural and political development of Imo State and the larger society. Through these research, developmental and innovative efforts, we (as a university) should be able to adequately and effectively translate our numerous abstracts or dreams into concrete and human realities.
For the successful promotion of innovative research and scholarship in order to address new knowledge in human endeavour, and to create a good career prospect in academics and research among staff and students in the University, it is our mission to:
STRATEGIC PLAN FOR IMO STATE UNIVERSITY
Strategic planning is a systematic decision-making process that focuses attention on important issues and on how to resolve them. Strategic planning provides a general framework for action: a way to determine priorities, make wise choices and allocate scarce resources (e.g., time, money, skills) to achieve agreed-upon objectives. Strategic Planning allows people to be in control of their future along with an increased confidence about stepping up to opportunities and managing threats as well as being proactive
Imo State University Strategic Plan will help us identify and prioritize our needs and to mobilize our financial and human resources to attend to these needs. This will take into consideration the vision, aspiration and philosophy of the University as well as our strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analysis – within a time frame.
In order to put in place a suitable and sustainable Strategic Plan for Imo State University, we are going to ask ourselves the following four basic questions:
With the above in mind, we intend to facilitate the establishment of a fifteen-year STRATRGIC PLAN that will provide a rational, comprehensive and holistic guide to the growth and development of Imo State University.
STRENGTHS, WEAKNESSES, OPPORTUNITIES AND THREATS (SWOT) ANALYSIS OF IMO STATE UNIVERSITY