THE ROLE OF UNIVERSITIES IN SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT IN NIGERIA By Dorathy Pius Ndangra
Federal university Kashere, Gombe State Ngeria
The philosophy of University education in Nigeria stems from the Nation’s philosophy of education which was derived from the Nation’s philosophies. These philosophies are as found in the National policy on Education (Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2004). The fundamental principles about the importance of education to national and individual growth engendered the three basic items under Nigeria’s philosophy of Education. These three basic philosophical items are: a.
The development of the individual into a sound and effective citizen; b.
The full integration of the individual into the community; and c.
The provision of equal access to educational opportunities for all citizens of the country, at primary, secondary and tertiary levels both inside and outside the formal school system (FRN, 2004, p.6) Nigerian University system has contributed to National development through the intensified and diversified programmes for sustainable development. University Education in Nigeria had provided general high level education which prepared individuals for entry into government, professional, business and the industry. University education leads to greater career opportunities because employers prefer University graduates. Thus, it provides whole range of academic subject courses and career-specifics courses allowing individuals to chart their career paths confer increased earning capacity, broaden the range of opportunities for changing career direction through the provision of necessary skills and knowledge of new and rewarding career man-power training. One of the major objectives of establishing Universities is to contribute to manpower development. The contribution of Universities to manpower development is currently multi faceted and multidisciplinary Faculties of Agriculture, Education, Social and Management Sciences, Medicine, Law, Sciences e.t.c., have a curriculum to provide broad-based competent middle level manpower that can be usefully engaged in development of Nigerian’s economy as employees in the public and private sectors or as entrepreneurs. Based on the trained manpower that has been produced over the years, there has been tremendous improvement in this area of Manpower for both private and public sectors. Nigeria manpower needs has drastically reduced in the area of Law, Engineering, Chemistry, Public administration, Political Science, Biochemistry, Agriculture, Climatology, e.t.c. Research simply refers to that aspect of the Universities mandate to conduct investigations into issues. Nigeria’s academic research output has contributed immensely to the development of the Nigerian economy. Areas like Agriculture, for example, have witnessed tremendous improvement with the development of crop varieties, upgrading of genetic pool of indigenous livestock.
TRANSFER OF TECHNOLOGIES
In most cases, members of the University expect the academia to prove it’s worth using whatever mechanisms it can adopt. The community services responsibility of a University consists of faculty and students contributions directly and indirectly, to finding solutions to societal problems. For example, the Faculty of medicine provides community health centres where both Staff and Students interact directly with, learn about the health problems of the local people and consequently make contributions to solving them. An example is the University of Maiduguri Teaching Hospital (UMTH) Community Health Centres in Madagali Local Government Areas. CHALLENGES
Today, economic growth and sustainable development depends squarely on the quality of University education. Thus, quality University education remains crucial to Nigeria’s competitiveness in the knowledge oriented economy. However, capacity building for quality University education is being stymied by constraints such as brain drain,...
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