The Vice-Chancellor, Federal University Lokoja (FUL), Professor Olayemi Akinwumi, has charged women to equip themselves with digital skills that will enhance their capabilities towards contributing meaningfully in diverse fields. Professor Akinwumi made this known during a 3-Day Training Workshop organized by the US Exchange Alumni, Kogi State Chapter with the theme “EmpowerNet: Secure-Connect-Strive for Kogi Women in Civil Service” which was held between 20th and 22nd November, 2023 at the ICT Center, Federal University Lokoja.
The US Exchange Alumni Association, Kogi Chapter is one of several U.S. Government-sponsored exchange program participants across the world who are committed to impacting and advancing their communities and the world. The workshop aimed to provide women with the needed skills on how to use the computer and internet communication systems effectively and safely, as well as raise their awareness about the risks of online fraud and steps that can be taken to prevent it. It is designed to build their confidence in using computer and internet communication systems and provide a safe space for help when needed while reducing the digital divide between men and women in the civil service.
Speaking during the opening ceremony, the Vice-Chancellor underscored the importance of digital literacy in the career and professional growth of women in civil service. “Computer literacy is not just a skill; it is a gateway to economic independence, professional growth, and social empowerment. By equipping women with the tools and knowledge to navigate the digital landscape, the barriers that have historically limited their participation in the workforce will be dismantled. Computer competency can further help in transcending traditional gender boundaries or biases; enhance the women’s individual capabilities, and enable them to contribute meaningfully in diverse fields,” he maintained.
Professor Akinwumi, who described the workshop as timely, especially coming at a very auspicious time given the dynamics of today’s digital and competitive age, stated that the training workshop would further empower the participants, build their capacities, and unlock their full potential in their respective homes, workplaces, and the world at large.
Continuing, the VC remarked, “We are happy that the Kogi Chapter is organizing this Training Workshop which aims to equip participants with practical knowledge on the use of computers, information management, fraud prevention, and email communication for women civil servants drawn from different ministries and agencies, including the Civil Defence.” He added that programmes such as this workshop would go a long way in building a more equitable future where opportunities and successes are determined by merit rather than gender, and therefore congratulated the participants for their nomination.
While commending the US Exchange Alumni, Kogi State Chapter for organizing the training workshop, the erudite professor of African history challenged them to continue to work towards creating more impact within the Federal University Lokoja and Kogi State in the years to come.
In their separate remarks, the Chairman, Kogi State Chapter of the US Exchange Alumni, Professor Joseph Abel, who presented certificates to the participants, and other distinguished members of the Association - Professor Ofure Aito, Associate Professor Abdulhameed Salawu, Khadijat Abubakar Isa (Secretary), and Mr. Abdullahi Baba, encouraged the women to see themselves differently as they are endowed with great potentials that can turn their world around and even make them contribute maximally to nation building. They urged the participants to go back to their respective offices and put to use the practical knowledge they have gained as follow-up visits would be embarked upon to check on their level of improvement and impact at their places of work, adding that more similar training programmes would be organized and opened to more participants in the near future.
Filled with great excitement and a sense of gratitude, some of the participants who spoke at the end of the 3-Day Workshop, thanked the organizers for the initiative, saying the programme had further opened their eyes and awakened their self-consciousness about the importance of ICT in this digital age. They equally commended the lead facilitator and resource person, Mr. Peter Akintokumbo, who is the acting Director of ICT of the University, for the pedagogy and simplicity with which he effortlessly delivered the practical lectures. See more pictures here