71-year-old is UNILAG’s best Ph.D graduate

By Damola Kola-Dare

A 71-year-old Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) student, Mrs. Felicia Ifeyinwa Marinze, has become one of the best graduating students from the School of Postgraduate Studies (SPGS) at the University of Lagos (UNILAG).

The institution’s Vice Chancellor, Prof. Oluwatoyin Ogundipe, announced this on Wednesday at a media briefing on activities lined up for the institution’s 51st convocation in Lagos.

The vice chancellor said Mrs. Marinze (PhD French) with matriculation number 849003042 from the Department of European Languages and International Studies will be the oldest to be awarded a PhD degree in the history of the university.

He added that the 71-year-old, with the best PhD thesis, had just demonstrated to the world that age is not a barrier to attaining any height.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the title of Marinze thesis is: Evaluation de la Competence Communicative Orale du Francais Des Apprenants Nationale Diploma Des Polytechniques Seledionness du Nigeria.

Ogundipe also said Olatunji Moruf, from the Department of Marine Science, and Ekundayo Mesagan, of the Department of Economics, would also be awarded the best PhD thesis in Humanities, alongside Mrs. Marinze.

The vice chancellor said 281 of the 15,753 students would be graduating in the First Class Upper Division.

Out of the figures, 281 made First Class, with the highest number of 70 coming from the Faculty of Engineering.

“The best graduating student with the highest CGPA is Alimi Ibrahim Adedeji (4.98) from the Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering. He is the Best Graduating Student. He is closely followed by Popoola Victoria Opeyemi with the CGPA of 4.90 from the Department of Economics, Faculty of Social Sciences and also has the best result in the Humanities.

“The Best Overall Ph.D thesis for this year’s graduating student was presented by Moruf Rasheed Olatunji from the Department of Marine Science, Faculty of Science. Mesagan Peter Ekundayo from the Department of Economics, Faculty of Social Sciences will be awarded the best Ph.D thesis in the Humanities,” he said.

“The three-day convocation will culminate in the graduation of 15,753 students. These comprise 7,754 students who will be awarded first degrees and 7,999 Postgraduate degrees.

“We shall also award 160 Diplomas in Social Works and Human Kinetics.

“The Faculty of Engineering came tops in the category of First Class with 70, followed by Management Sciences with 59 among others,” Ogundipe said.

He also announced that the university would be honouring one of its late vice chancellors, Prof. Ibidapo Obe, with a post-humours award.

According to him, the university will also award honorary doctorate degree to Dr. Ameyo Stella-Adadevo (Post-Humours), a lead Consultant Physician and Endocrinologist at the First Consultant Hospital, at the ceremony.

Also to be awarded are: Alhaji Mohammed Indimi, Dr. Kessington Adebutu and Mr. Biodun Shobanjo, Chairman of Troyka Holdings Limited.

Ogundipe explained that the university had, in the last one year, recorded huge successes, particularly in research and internalisation infrastructure upgrade.

It had also continued to witness growth and developments in other facets, he said.

The vice chancellor said UNILAG had attracted N14 billion research grants in the last three years, both locally and internationally.

“This is a pointer to the renaissance of research culture in the university.

“Our researchers also had six patents in 2019 and five in 2020 out of which two, in each year, have been prototyped.

“Scholars of the university have continued to raise the bar of research excellence.

“Drawn from departments and faculties, some scholars recently had their research proposals approved for generous funding with grants from the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETfund).

“Our university is reputable for being one of Nigeria’s leaving institutions, especially in the area of research and innovation.

“This path, which we have consolidated under the current leadership, has improved our ranking as first in Nigeria and 12th in Africa, just last year.”

Speaking on activities lined up for the three-day event, Ogundipe said the convocation lecture will hold on July 5 with the lecture, titled: National Development and Knowledge Economy in the Digital Age: Leapfrogging SNEs into the 21st Century.

The vice chancellor said the lecture would be delivered by the Governor of Central Bank (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele.

He added that the Chairman of Citadel Global Community Church, Pastor Tunde Bakare, would be chairman at the occasion.

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