Igbinedion University, Okada, Edo State, has reveald plans to set up a firm for marketing of products produced by its students under the university’s mandatory entrepreneurship and skill acquisition programme.
Vice-Chancellor of the university, Lawrence Ezemonye, made this known yesterday, Wednesday in Okada during the institution’s 10th students’ product exhibition.
He said the firm had become necessary in order to commercialise all the products being made by students every year, with the proceeds reverted to the programme to develop it better.
“We are setting up a firm for the EPS (Entrepreneurship and Skills Acquisition) programme; it is to commercialise all the products we have seen here. Every year, products will be sold, and the funds returned to the school account and reverted to the EPS programme to develop it better,” he said.
The vice-chancellor said the exhibition marked the formal conclusion of the training, which was mandatory for 300-level students in all disciplines, after they had been exposed to 14 different skill sets.
He described the role of the university in fostering entrepreneurial culture amongst students and staffers as critical to national development.
“This is in tandem with our overarching goal of ensuring that every graduate leaves the university with at least one skill that will enable him/her to find a profitable niche in an economy where youth unemployment has climbed to over 30 per cent.
“The making of an entrepreneur goes beyond learning and developing a skill. Therefore, the university adopts a multifaceted approach in achieving our objectives in this area,” said Mr Ezemonye, a professor.
The guest speaker, Friday Okpara, expressed the regret that many universities were not preparing their students for the challenges after school, particularly how to stand on their own.
Mr Okpara, who is the director, Partnership and Coordination, Small and Medium Enterprise Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN), said that students were rather being prepared to carry files around, looking for jobs that were not available.
He lauded the Igbinedion University for toeing the right path of inculcating entrepreneurial mind into their students and bequeathing to them practical components of the skills.