EXECUTIVE SECRETARY, PTDF HOSTS VICE CHANCELLORS OF FEDERAL UNIVERSITIES—EXPLAINS NEW STRATEGIC AGENDA

The full compliment of Vice Chancellors of Federal Universities in Nigeria was hosted to a meeting/ interactive session by the Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Technology Development Fund, Dr Bello Aliyu Gusau today (11/04/17) where he discussed the new strategic agenda that will govern the training and capacity building programmes of the Fund.

At the centre of the agenda is the domestication of all PTDF training and capacity building programmes, with the implication that Nigerian universities will now play a greater role in the process as partners and major stakeholders.

PTDF Executive Secretary explained that the present scholarship arrangement which is disproportionately focused on the Overseas Scholarship Scheme, is no longer sustainable and therefore needs to be reversed, so that the bulk of the scholarship to be offered going forward, would be for training in Nigerian universities.

“At the moment PTDF has decided that there will be no more undergraduate Overseas Scholarships. All undergraduate programmes for sponsorship by PTDF will now be done in Nigerian universities. For the post graduate progarmmes, the bulk of that for both the Masters and PhD’s will be done in Nigerian universities. We are also open to collaboration especially through the split-site PhD programme”

A Cross Section of the ES and University VCs

He said the meeting/interactive session with the Vice Chancellors is to agree on relevant terms as well as gather sufficient information that will assist the Fund in the planning and implementation process. The Executive Secretary, PTDF made it clear that it has not completely jettisoned the overseas scholarship programmes, as it will continue to sponsor few candidates overseas especially for courses that are not offered in Nigerian universities and through partnership agreements with select foreign universities.

The Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission (NUC), Professor Abubakar Adamu Rasheed welcomed the initiative by PTDF, which he said tallies with the vision to collectively reform post graduate training in Nigeria. He described PTDF as the single most important intervention agency outside the education family that is intervening to build capacity in selected areas in this country. “No other agency in the last 20 years or more outside the education ministry has demonstrated adequate responsibility and interest in changing the knowledge industry in Nigeria….I want to commend the Executive Secretary, PTDF for his vision and his faith in the Nigerian university system”.

 

Kalu Otisi

Head, Press and External Relations Unit