The Registrar, Federal University Lokoja (FUL), Dr. Rebecca Aimiohu Okojie has advocated for leadership beyond titles, emphasizing the importance of synergy among individuals and collective efforts for overall organizational performance.
Delivering a lecture at the Annual General Meeting and Conference of the Association of Nigerian University Professional Administrators (ANUPA) with the theme "Re-visioning, Re-triggering, and Recommitting to University Administration in an Era of Uncertainty," Dr. Okojie challenged professional administrators to adopt teamwork while contributing to the advancement of their respective universities.
The event, which was held at the National Universities Commission's (NUC) Conference Hall at Maitama in Abuja between Wednesday, November 29, and Friday, December 1, 2023, brought together Registrars and professional administrators from different Nigerian Universities to discuss the challenges in the system and chart the way forward.
In her thought-provoking lecture entitled "Pathways to Overcoming Challenges of the Nigerian University System in the 21st Century: University and the Imperative of Value Addition (Addiction)," the seasoned administrator defined a pathway as a challenging trajectory leading to a course of action and harped on the need to embrace challenges as opportunities to test and enhance skills rather than avoiding them.
Highlighting the pivotal roles of administrators in an organization, Dr. Okojie outlined the significant functions they perform in organizing and managing the affairs of an institution, describing a university as a community of individuals dedicated to knowledge generation and transmission. She however argued that some essential administrative skills, including analytical thinking, innovation, adaptability, active learning, critical thinking, creativity, and technological proficiency, were very critical to the performance and job delivery of administrators.
The 3rd Registrar and chief administrative officer of the Federal University Lokoja identified issues such as poor funding, infrastructural decay, and obsolete curricula as the major challenges confronting universities in Nigeria. She enjoined the administrators to work with open minds and collaborate with stakeholders to ensure that problems such as staff and student unrest, policy instability, knowledge gaps, and unethical practices were tackled effectively.
In proposing solutions to the identified problems, Dr. Okojie recommended a comprehensive government approach, emphasizing strategic planning aligned with evolving educational trends. She also stressed the importance of visionary leadership, resilience in overcoming challenges, capacity building, and the integration of technology to enhance efficiency and quality service delivery.
Amidst the ever-evolving technological advancement, Dr. Okojie encouraged administrators to seize opportunities to learn new skills that will ensure their effective service delivery in a tech-driven era. In addition, she highlighted the democratic nature of universities, emphasizing the need for professionalism, good judgment, and polite behavior among all individuals involved in the day-to-day operation of the ivory towers. See more pictures here