-By: Adeyemi Ayeku

The University of Ibadan, Nigeria, organized a two-day programme for finalists across all the faculties who are on the first class grade or distinctions. The programme tagged “Beyond Smart Masterclass for Students with first class and distinctions” was designed specifically to empower the students with leadership, employability and entrepreneurial skills to make them stand out in the outside world.

The two-day event, which was held at the Conference Centre, UI Hotels, UI, witnessed the presence of notable personalities who are the epitome of success in their endeavours, talked to the students present on what to do in order to be successful rather than roaming about the street with their certificates after leaving the four walls of the University. These great persons are Mr Bisi Oni, CEO, Fundquest Services Ltd and Founder, Unusual Insight Ltd, Chris Ani, Block Chain Analyst and Crypto Investor, Dunni Ogunjobi, a serial Entrepreneur and Lawyer, Mayowa Owolabi, CEO, Mayconcept Solutions and lastly, Francis Chiora, a renowned investor and Entrepreneur.

Notably, this programme was the idea of the current Deputy Vice Chancellor on Research, Innovation and Strategic Partnership, Professor Adenike K. Adeyemo. After the opening speech by the Vice Chancellor, Prof Abel Idowu Olayinka, the DVC stressed that the reason she decided to organize such programme was to ensure that the graduates of UI, the first and the best Institution in Nigeria, are good ambassadors of the Institution outside and are put on a more advantaged position vis a vis the graduates from other schools in the competitive labour market. She thanked the Vice Chancellor for accepting to sponsor the programme for the students and among other things, she mentioned in passing that there are about 150 students in their final year in UI currently on a first-class, while about 800 plus are on the second-class upper category.

The main anchor of the programme, Mr Bisi Oni, who also doubles as a mentor to all other facilitators, started the training session with the topic, “Winning the game of the Mind” In this session, he emphasized the importance of positive thinking and value creation. According to him, “you must win within before you can win outside”; “when you get to a new environment, always ask yourself what are the opportunities here”. He also made it clear to all that the fact that one is on a first class is a pressure to perform on the job or any fare and to outperform one’s peers. Mr Bisi Oni also, on the second day, gave the students practical skills on interview sessions with any corporations or organizations.

Asides all these, the students were also opened to forex trading, blockchains, cryptocurrencies, how to start and grow your own business and other benefits like networking among themselves and the facilitators.

According to a participant, Fadare Esther from the Classics Department, Faculty of Arts, “personally, I am renewed and reshaped and refreshed. Special thanks to the Unusual Insight and to the initiative of the DVC for such great opportunity. These two days are to be forever remembered.


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