IPS Harvests 25 Industry-Ready Engineers At 13th Induction Ceremony


In furtherance of its mandate to meet the needs of the hydrocarbon industry through commitment to excellence in manpower training, the Institute of Petroleum Studies (IPS), has inducted 25 world-class Petroleum Engineers who successfully concluded their Master of Science degree programme in Petroleum Engineering and Project Development.

Induction of the Batch 13 Class and Anniversary Celebration of the Institute held at the Ebitimi Banigo Auditorium, last Thursday with a well-appointed Dinner that held at the TOTAL Village later in the evening to round off the weeklong programme.

The ceremony also featured the graduation 16 students who successfully completed TOTAL’s flagship Sustainable Development programme as part of the Batch 8 Postgraduate Diploma in Petroleum Technology. The event which featured Induction of Messrs Victor Bandele, Abiodun Afolabi and Nicolas Terraz as Fellows of the Institute, also witnessed the presentation of IPS Meritorious Award to Mr. Kido Musa, who served as Professional Mentor to the outgoing students  and a  Valedictory Address delivered by Miss Chinyere Offor, who carted away 14 prizes out of the 23 on offer to emerge as Best Graduating Student.  

Delivering the Induction Lecture entitled: Bridging the University—Industry Dichotomy in a Lean Economy, General Manager, Operations Technical Subsurface Production of Mobil Producing Nigeria, Mr. Cletus Egbuzie, pointed out that universities primarily focused on carrying out core research with long-term goals, as well as training personnel and building capacity, a mandate which he said revolved around striving to meet industry needs.

“The industry focuses attention on efficiency and profitability. The university focuses on training manpower and building capacity of people to meet industry needs. The industry brings in skills, but the academia finds it difficult to apply those skills. The academia wants the industry to buy into its research findings, but the industry is not readily buying into the research,” the Induction Lecturer noted, pointing out that the gap in realising the need of others amplified the dichotomy between the two groups.

Acknowledging the dichotomy, Mr. Egbuzie stated that to bridge the gap, “Universities should leverage their assets and also deliver returns on industry investments. They should identify gaps by asking industry for topics of mutual interest and form mutually beneficial alliances. The industry can share with the academia the vision of how collaborations can help their operations. Industry can help upgrade research centres to become centres of excellence and innovation hubs by inviting faculties to invest in their industries through Sabbatical Appointments, Seminars, Workshop and other training programmes.”

He congratulated the University and TOTAL/NNPC Joint Venture on the collaboration which established the Institute of Petroleum Studies, stating that the IPS model which the University replicated in other Centres and Institutes such as the Emerald Energy Institute met international standards in training and applied research in oil and gas. 

Mr. Egbuzie further advised the new graduates to diligently translate the knowledge they acquired during their training to better the industry and society at large. “I challenge you not to rest on your oars; avail your knowledge to tackle challenges in the industry. Be open and critically-minded and bring solutions to the society,” the Lecturer told them.

In his welcome remarks, Vice-Chancellor, Professor Ndowa Lale, who congratulated major partners that contributed to the successes of the Institute, expressed happiness that the IPS success story proved that Nigerians could deliver results in an enabling environment.

“It is worthy of note that the Institute of Petroleum Studies has come of age and has continued to expand to areas of research not initially envisioned at the inception of the programme in 2003. The Institute has become a flagship Centre of Excellence in the University and the country at large. Other universities and centres look up to IPS as an operational model.

“Our collaboration with the famous IFP School in Paris, France, that delivers a twelve-month Master’s Degree programme in Petroleum Engineering and Project Development has been tremendously successful, particularly in the quality of graduates that are turned out of the programme each year. As a University, we are very grateful for this exemplary partnership that is now being replicated elsewhere in the country,” Professor Lale said.

In his speech, Director IFP School in France, Professor Phillip Pincheon, expressed satisfaction that the Institute has grown tremendously into a world-class in developing requisite manpower in the hydrocarbon industry.

“We want to restate our commitment to produce more Petroleum Engineers who will continue to work hard. I urge the new graduates to show diligence, a sense of responsibility and break new grounds in advanced research,” Professor Pincheon said. He commended the major partners for working so hard to record milestones that were celebrated at the 13th Induction ceremony.

In their contributions, Managing Director of TOTAL E&P Nigeria Limited, Mr. Nicolas Terraz and Executive Director, Human Resources and Corporate Affairs of TOTAL and new Chairman of the Governing Board of IPS, Mr. Abiodun Afolabi, said the 13th Induction ceremony offered them an opportunity to celebrate a successful partnership that had continued to foster research, knowledge transfer and sharing of skills to the benefit of all parties.

Also speaking, Coordinator of the IFP School in IPS, Francis Fusier, praised the success of the Institute since its inception, expressing satisfaction that the Institute has grown into a world-class centre in the training of manpower for the oil and gas -industry. Fusier also commended the partners for keeping the partnership alive, congratulating the new inductees for successfully completing their studies.

Earlier in his welcome remarks, Director of IPS, Professor Dulu Appah, disclosed that IPS had graduated a total of 242 Petroleum Engineers and making remarkable contributions to the petroleum industry. He showered encomiums on the founding fathers and his predecessors for the success story of the Institute.

“The IPS is a typical example of internationalisation of higher education at its best. We have learned valuable lessons in international and corporate partnerships and delivering on the dream of sustaining the IPS legacy in these dire times.” Professor Appah said, expressing commitment to sustain the legacy even in the midst of biting economic recession.

Other major highlights of the Induction ceremony included the presentation of awards and prizes to deserving persons, induction into professional societies, goodwill messages from institutional partners, career fair, novelty football match and Induction/Award Dinner at TOTAL Village.

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