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An entrepreneurship student organisation in the University, ENACTUS has launched a new application for students that would be usable on android devices in collaboration with Campus Hub. 
The event which held at the Ebitimi Banigo Auditorium on Wednesday, September 14, 2016, witnessed the formal introduction of the new application known as Campus Hub which is the brainchild of three students of the University, who are also members of ENACTUS namely, David Agbamoro, a Fourth Year Student of the Department of Accounting in the Faculty of Management Sciences, George Adowei and Chibuzor Mordi, both of the Department of Geology and Mining Technology in the Faculty of Science.
In their separate addresses, Agbamoro and Adowei, disclosed that the new application would enhance accessibility of the students to the University environment, and such features as education with access to academic materials on various disciplines such as roomie which helps users in finding a roommate with ease, online shopping, business, schedule and lifestyle, news update platforms, amongst others. “This application was developed to facilitate the entire learning curve for students in addition to enhancing their social life on Campus”, the duo said, as they illustrated the use of the new app at the launch.
Team Leader of ENACTUS in UniPort, Chinonso Erondu, who spoke extensively on the activities of the student organisation on Campus, called on interested persons to join the digital group to reap unlimited online exposure and benefits. “In addition to embarking on community outreach programmes, our leadership and career initiatives create meaningful opportunities for cross-generational learning and exchange, as well as placement of students and alumni in companies in search of emergent talents that we incubate at ENACTUS,” he stated.
Commending the students for developing the android application, one of the Faculty Advisers of ENACTUS and a Lecturer in the Department of Sociology in the Faculty of Social Sciences, Dr. Steve Wordu, expressed excitement at the creative abilities of the younger generation, hoping that some of them would develop software and business ideas that can transform them into global brand ambassadors. “The creative abilities of young people are limitless and it is very important for them to seek veritable platforms that would enable them achieve their dreams. We are here to support them turn their dream into reality,” he said at the occasion.

 

Arrangements have reached advanced stages for the mounting of a robust entrepreneurship training programme for students of the University of Port Harcourt under the auspices of the Commonwealth Games Nigeria. The anticipated training session would form part of the community projects undertaken by a student of the University and Administrator under the Commonwealth Games Federation-University Internship Programme, Mr. Francis Labi.
Elaborating on plans for the forthcoming programme to our Correspondent shortly after a meeting with Director of the Sports Institute, Professor Ken Anugweje on Friday, September 17, 2016, Mr. Labi said the training session would commence with an opening ceremony billed for the Ebitimi Banigo Auditorium on Thursday, October 20. He further disclosed that the different training sessions would take place at the International Students’ Centre and would be concluded on Saturday, October 22, 2016.
“Participating students will be trained on web and graphic design, social media and digital marketing, cinematography (filming and photography), business development strategy, debt analysis and management, bead-making and craft, professional decoration, make-up and catering,” Mr. Labi further disclosed, stating that the training would be completely free of charge for all participants. 
According to the arrangement, four Resource Persons would speak on Youths and Sports, Information and Communication Technology, Excellent Leadership and Entertainment Skills at the opening ceremony before participants would dissolve into the formal training session.
Labi, who had worked on two earlier projects, including website design for the Commonwealth Games Nigeria and Water Support Project at Ikata Community in Ahoada/East Local Government Area, said the proposed training programme would be part of the four projects he conceived to be funded by the Commonwealth Games organisation.
“Basically, I want to empower my fellow students through the opportunity made available to me by the Commonwealth Games. In this era when ideas rule the world, the best way to go is to embrace entrepreneurship, and I want students to become financially-independent and not wait for any white-collar job on graduation. I believe that the proposed training session would help in reducing unemployment in this part of the country,” he said, calling on organisations and individuals who may wish to exhibit their products at the event to contact him on 08034654492 or send electronic mail to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., call or send WhatsApp message to 08164606182 for seat reservation.

 

A total of 420 Animal Scientists from across the country, including five from the University of Port Harcourt, were admitted into membership of the Nigerian Institute of Animal Science (NIAS) at the 8th Induction Ceremony of the Institute which held alongside the 5th Joint Annual Meeting of the Animal Science Association of Nigeria (ASAN) at the Ebitimi Banigo Auditorium, University Park between Sunday, 18th and Thursday, 22nd September, 2016.
Given a breakdown of the figure, President of NIAS, Professor Israel Adu, disclosed that 364 of the new Animal Scientists were inducted as Graduate Animal Scientists, 24 as Associate Animal Scientists, 119 as Registered Animal Scientists, while 13 Registered Animal Scientists were inducted as Fellows of the College of Animal Scientists of Nigeria.
Erstwhile Deputy Vice-Chancellor in charge of Research and Development, Professor Bene Willie Abbey, was among the 13 RAS admitted into the Fellowship of NIAS. The new Fellows were adorned with academic robes at the colourful event and charged to mentor younger entrants into the profession and propagate the interest of the Institute.
Chief Judge of Rivers State, Justice Adama Iyayi-Lamikanra, represented by a Deputy Registrar in the High Court, Sir Chukwuma Mark, administered the Oath of Allegiance on the new Inductees, while the President, Professor Adu, thereafter admitted the Inductees into the Institute, admonishing them to abide by the ethics of the profession.
“You are now certified as agents trained in the knowledge of providing adequate food and production of animals, taking into consideration food security that will cater for the needs of the nation. Believe in yourself; don’t allow anyone to undermine you; live by our ethics as professionals, know your responsibilities by reading the NIAS Act and explore the powers and responsibilities therein. The nation is facing tough challenges at this point in time; seize the moment and explore opportunities in the profession so that we can collectively contribute to nation-building,” the NIAS President advised the new Inductees.


In his speech, Governor Nyesom Wike, who was represented by the Commissioner of Agriculture, Barrister Onimim Jacks, expressed optimism that bringing the conference to Port Harcourt would attract significant improvements in the agricultural sector of the State and the rest of the country.
“It is a well-established fact that the major source of protein for most Nigerian households is from the animal source. This implies that the animal industry contributes immensely to the average households’ nutritional needs, as well as holds the potential to transform the Nigerian economy. Therefore, improving and harnessing the potentials of the Nigerian animal industry should be the watchword of every stakeholder in the business of animal agriculture. It is on this premise that I consider the theme of this year’s conference: “Repositioning Animal Agriculture in a dwindling Oil Economy” as one of the sure approaches to transforming the downtrodden States and national economy,” the Governor said in his address.
Similarly, a Director in the Ministry of Agriculture, Mr. John Taiwo, who stood in for the Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbeh, expressed the commitment of the Federal Government to growing the agricultural sector. 
“Necessary steps are being taken by the Federal Government as regards ending hunger in Nigeria. Several meetings are being held to ensure that the 2016 budget is fully implemented, especially as it concerns the sector. This budget will include soft loans to prospective farmers who may wish to further the course of agriculture. Nigerians look forward to a brighter future with agriculture and we are sure to get there,” the Minister said.
In his keynote address entitled: Repositioning of Animal Agriculture in a Dwindling Oil Economy, a Senator of the 7th National Assembly, Adegbenga Kaka, lambasted Government at all levels for neglecting animal agriculture in preference for crops.
“Lip service has been paid by all tiers of Government to Agriculture over the last five decades as the last key of the bunch to open the door for economic prosperity and meaningful livelihood. It is very convenient to use agriculture as the weeping baby with despicable resource allocation of between 2-3%, consistently for many years, as our annual national budget to this critical sector. Even after the 2003 Maputo declaration that recommended a minimum of 10% for 5 years till 2008, the situation remained with paltry sums, barely enough to address the agricultural needs of farming communities in five Local Governments of the 774 LGAs in the country,” Senator Kaka said, condemning what he described as policy somersaults resulting from selfish, parochial, sectional and political considerations by the ruling elite. 
“Our animal agriculture has been brutally challenged by all manner of centrifugal and centripetal forces from both within and without the industry. The dwindling oil economy has only helped to bring to the fore these challenges,” he lamented, pointing out that “With purposefully planned agricultural development, especially animal agriculture, the Medical Doctors will have reduced challenges from malnutrition, balanced diet will ensure resistance to most diseases, our gross domestic product will have continuous leap and positive growth, unemployment will be reduced to the barest minimum.”  
The keynote speaker tasked all stakeholders to rise to the challenges of saving the nation’s economy by embarking on an aggressive revitalisation of four key sectors, namely: agriculture, energy generation and supplies, education and resolution of the Niger Delta crisis.
In his goodwill message, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Ndowa Lale, who spoke through the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Administration), Professor Anthony Ibe, recalled some of the steps taken by the University to advance the teaching of agriculture through the provision of a stable environment for quality research, charging participants to propagate the practical aspects of the sector, in addition to exposing the trainees to mechanised agricultural techniques.
“I am pleased to announce that the Senate of this University approved the establishment of the Department of Animal Science in 2014, which demerged from the then Department of Animal Science and Fisheries. The separation has placed Animal Science as an important specialisation in this University, and I am pleased to know that the young Department is competing with older professional programmes in the University. The young Department of Animal Science is fast developing in the University to compete with other professional programmes established several years ago. Let me seize the opportunity to appeal to the Institute to assist the University as it strives to develop a more robust Department of Animal Science, particularly when you are invited to assess our facilities for accreditation purposes. As a foremost research-intensive Entrepreneurial University, the University of Port Harcourt is highly committed to promoting agribusiness through Animal Agriculture,” the Vice-Chancellor said in his address. 
The goodwill speech from the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), was delivered by Dr. Ibrahim Rufai, while President of ASAN, Mr. Taiwo Adeoye, also presented an address on behalf of the umbrella body which also held its 21st Annual General Meeting as part of the conference.

 

The Entrepreneurship Centre in collaboration with a Port Harcourt-based business outlet, Trans-Consulting, has ended a four-week training programme for National Youth Service Corps Members serving in Obio/Akpor, Port Harcourt City and Emohua Local Government Areas of Rivers State. The one-day training programme took place on Thursday, September 8, 2016.
Declaring open the training session for the first batch of Corps Members which held in the Auditorium of the Entrepreneurship Centre at the University Park, representative of the Vice-Chancellor and Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Professor OkeyOnuchuku, stressed the need for the participants to acquire specific skills that would enable them set up their own businesses, while awaiting paid employment after their service year. 
“You are here to make a breakthrough in entrepreneurship in line with the new expectation of society that you should strive to earn a livelihood to support yourself and your families. As things stand today, you do not need anybody to tell you that unemployment has become a major problem in our country which is reeling under the worst type of economic recession in decades. This period requires creative thinking and innovative application of entrepreneurial skills to compliment what you studied in the university. In this season of recession, only those who can adapt to the harsh economic environment will survive it, while those who may choose to continue waiting for paid employment would have to do so for a very long time with all the attendant frustration,” he told them. 
Professor Onuchuku advised the Corps Members to benefit maximally from the training provided by the Entrepreneurship Centre and utilize the skills they acquired to boost their personal circumstances, including improving the country’s GDP.
Commending Trans-Consult for the partnership with the Entrepreneurship Centre to impact young people positively, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor in charge of Academic matters, Professor Hakeem Fawehinmi, described the training programme as a shining example of that critical symbiotic relationship between town and gown in a mutually beneficial manner, urging the participants to make good use of the opportunity to better their lot.
 “This training programme would provide you an opportunity to think out of the box and create something that would distinguish you from your colleagues who are still dreaming of securing paid employment on passing out of the NYSC programme. Acquiring requisite hands-on skills can change you from mere job seekers to employers of labour within a very short time,” Professor Fawehinmi admonished the participating Corps Members, commending the Acting Director for repositioning the Entrepreneurship Centre to achieve its mandate.
Earlier in his welcome address, Acting Director of the Centre, Dr. Williams Olori, listed the gains of the training programme for the Corps Members, noting that limitless opportunities abounded for wealth creation in other sub-sectors of the economy such as agriculture, horticulture and fish farming, amongst others.


Explaining that the resource persons and the trainings were selected to equip the Corps Members with expertise and skills in the selected areas of training, the Acting Director noted that certificates would be issued to participants at the end of the training programme as added incentive for them to practicalise what they have learned.
In their separate addresses, Managing Director of Trans-Consulting, Leo Okereke and Zonal Inspector of the NYSC for Emohua Local Government Area, Paul Amoba, commended the partnership between the University and Trans-Consult to train Corps Members to become self-reliant on their passing out of the programme. Stressing that the skills acquisition scheme was introduced by the NYSC to curb unemployment in the country, the duo noted that UniPort had a lot to offer prospective clients as an Entrepreneurial University.
The training programmes covered Cosmetics and Makeup, Catering, Bread making and Cosmetology, Close Circuit Television (CCTV) Installation and Maintenance, Fashion Design, Events Management and Computer Repair, amongst other skills taught the participants.

 

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