The Director, Wuse II Study Centre of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN), Prof. Chidiogo Grace Okoli, has said that making the centre conducive for students learning and making sure that they have access to all that is needed for their studies will always remain her top priority.
Okoli stated this in a chat with NOUN News correspondent in her office in Abuja, where she also said that her centre, which is the second largest in the Abuja metropolis and with the student’s enrollment that is increasing daily, needs to provide students with better facilities.
The director, who is a former Dean of the Faculty of Health Science, disclosed that the advocacy drive of the centre is yielding positive results as they are have seen the influx of students daily.
She, however, said the centre engages in going from place to place to tell people about NOUN and even place the information on platforms to let people know what is obtainable in NOUN, as without the dissemination of information people will not know about the university.
The Wuse II centre, according to her, also engages in one-on-one services for people that cannot do it themselves, and come to the centre to get more information on how to get registered, and because they are satisfied with the services and discover that what the university does is true they also go about telling their friends and families.
She observed that the opportunity NOUN is giving to people to study especially with the decentralisation of the study system allows for them to study wherever they are at their leisure, which has made people to be excited coming to the university with assurance that they will graduate within the stipulated time.
Okoli added that sometimes with the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASSU) shutting down the conventional universities it makes NOUN the next sure bet for students in the country.
Asked on how she has been able to transform the centre since assuming office, she said the student are increasing and the condition at the centre, too, “is improving gradually because management has been magnanimous to the centre by approving the request of the centre by increasing their examination halls as against when student made to write their examinations outside under the canopies.”
The centre director equally said that with the improvement in the provision of facilities for student’s learning in all aspects, the students and staff too are happy because it has reduced the batching of examinations time.
She maintained that the relationship between the students and the centre is cordial “because to have a good relationship with the students and staff you need to tell the staff that we are all here because of the students, and if the students are not coming we won’t have a job any more and we are here to serve them.
“Always the students that comes to them, they make sure that they are diligently and patiently attended to and make sure to solve the issue of which they have come, even if the students are rude they have only few minutes to spend with them.
"So they just have to find a way to put off with whatever they are doing or saying to maintain a good relationship for that short time they have with the students, so that they too will go happily.
Moreover, that’s the orientation and the training given to staff of the centre that on no account should they go into a fight or tussle with any student, but to just quietly and respectfully handle issues with them.”
She said that they always talk to the students and re-orientate them so they can speak about the challenges they are facing and advise them on the way forward and guild them on how to go about their studies, too.
The director stated that NOUN is making more graduates than any other university in the country, which is an improvement and prayed that there should be progress in the university in general.