Vice-Chancellor of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Professor Olufemi A. Peters, has said that the welfare and satisfaction of students are of utmost priority to his administration.
Peters stated this in Abuja during the 21st Matriculation Ceremony for the students of the university held on Saturday, October 23, 2021.
The event was witnessed through a virtual link across the 103 study centres of the university in the country in compliance with the COVID-19 protocol.
A total of 14,953 fresh students were sworn in for the university’s 2020/2021 second semester session.
In his speech, the vice-chancellor told the new students: “It is my delight and responsibility to assure you that I, indeed the entire management and NOUN community, am committed to making your stay in NOUN seamless, peaceful and safe.
“Your welfare and satisfaction are paramount to us. Our study centres are being renovated and modified for effective and ever improving service delivery."
Peters added, “Our course materials development, information request, service delivery and examination administration processes are continuously reviewed to advance your learning experience.
"Our e-library facilities are replicated in all study centres and will be further enhanced.”
The vice-chancellor, upon assumption of office on February 11, 2021, had assured that students’ welfare and satisfaction were top on his agenda, describing them as the university’s primary PR.
According to him, the mandate of NOUN is to ensure that students get the best in terms of online facilitation, portal access for information, learning content delivery, Computer-Based Text (CBT) examinations and assessments in whichever location of choice among the study centres in the country.
‘‘We will endeavour to provide you excellent opportunities to learning; an atmosphere of mutual respect, justice and quality service delivery.
"We are determined to make your learning rewarding and satisfactory,” he added.
The present challenges of COVID-19, he explained, have moved NOUN further and faster, as the learning systems are being upgraded continuously with the state of the art methodologies and innovations in the use of information and communications technology.
The VC disclosed that registration is being simplified further, with a ticketing system developed to attend to students’ requests for information complaints.
Speaking on NOUN’s strive for perfection in the deployment of cutting-edge technologies for learning and service delivery, he said that might encounter certain challenges as some of them would be related to the state of infrastructure.
He, however, said, “I urge you to be resolute when challenges arise, as they are part of life, even in learning. Please, seek assistance promptly and demand our attention in a friendly and cooperative manner and maintain a positive attitude."
Peters further urged the students to desist from anything that would make them become a disgrace to the NOUN family, while challenging them to be the generation that would restore Africa’s honour and change the continent.
Meanwhile, the Registrar of the university, Mr. Felix I. Edoka, administered the matriculation oath to the students.
NOUN is the only single-mode Open and Distance Learning (ODL) institution in Nigeria.
With about half a million students, it is easily the largest university in terms of enrollment in the West African subregion.