The United States Consulate in Nigeria has explained the choice of Chrisland University, Abeokuta, Ogun State as a focal point of its core mandate of promoting educational opportunities for students and scholars.
According to the Consulate, the decision is to further boost the institution’s impressive specialities in the area of research given its donation of huge e-library resources to the private university.
The Deputy Public Affairs Officer, United States Consulate- General, Jennifer Foltz, disclosed this when she led the US Consulate General’s visitation team to the university, where she urged Nigerian students, and other researchers in the country to take advantage of the plethora of American educational opportunities in order to enhance their careers while in school.
The Foltz team, which also held an interactive session at the university auditorium with the students and lecturers, said: “Our office at the US Consulate Mission in Lagos is responsible for promoting educational opportunities for students and scholars.”
She added: “As we travel across Southern Nigeria, we try to know different universities; the leadership, faculties, staff and students, as well as define which areas of specialities they have and research, with a view to looking at ways in which to collaborate. “So, we are here today at Chrisland University, Abeokuta to learn more about the university and see which areas we can forge our partnership with.”
Foltz further noted that the government of the United States of America currently has about seven US full-scholarship programmes for students at various universities in Nigeria, where research and teaching, among other activities were being carried out.
The Consulate, however, said it was impressed by the university’s research focus and scholarly mode of imparting knowledge to its teeming students, and pledged to forge more collaborations that would benefit the students in several ways. Earlier in her remarks, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Chinedum Peace Babalola, expressed optimism that the institution would use the opportunity of the visit to kick start a healthy relationship on capacity building support through knowledge sharing and exchange programmes, among others.
Prof Babalola, therefore, stated that plans were almost concluded by the university to establish a world-class Chrisland Institute for Security, Development, and Diplomacy, saying: “We expect this institute to provide knowledge in a wide range of areas, including curbing violent extremism, anti-terrorism, humanitarian affairs in order to foster development.”
“We believe the United States could assist us materially towards the realisation of the Centre,” she stressed, even as the Vice-Chancellor further said: “We sincerely desire avenues for continuous interaction between our students and their US counterparts. Your guidance on how to set about fruitful arrangements in this regard would be much appreciated.”