• Ekanem Ibokessien

Ritman University in Good Standing as Fourth Batch Undergrads Matriculate

Erstwhile Visiting Professor of the National Universities Commission (NUC), Prof Akaneren Essien, says Ritman University (RU) is rated by the NUC as being “in good standing”. Prof Essien, a former Vice Chancellor of the University of Uyo, remarked that RU has recorded huge successes in its academic programmes and the recent NUC accreditation exercise in which it received approval for all the 14 programmes offered. Matriculating students of RU were urged to dream of inventing works that can transform society in the mould of Facebook, Google, Samsung or Microsoft. Vice Chancellor of the University, Prof Celestine Ntuen, gave this charge during his speech at RU’s 4th Matriculation ceremony held in Ikot Ekpene, Akwa Ibom State on Friday 22 March 2019.

Prof Ntuen drew attention to Nigeria’s daunting challenges which provide opportunity for finding solutions – debilitating diseases, poverty, corruption, nepotistic employment, social injustice, religious intolerance, insecurity – since education is for solving problems. Citing Nelson Mandela, he noted that education is the most powerful weapon for changing the world, promising that RU shall offer Impactful and Qualitative (IQ) education, being an incubator and a catalyst for providing both intellectual and entrepreneurial environment for transforming human lives. Prof Ntuen encouraged students to establish harmonious relationships with family and peers, uphold moral values, be involved in community projects, aim to create jobs, and plan to be critical players in the productivity of Nigeria and Africa. Prof Akaneren Essien who was Guest Lecturer at the matriculation event taught RU undergraduates how to achieve success and excellence by studying and respecting norms stated in the student handbook, attending all lectures, studying hard, and making friends with focused colleagues. He told them to cut down on time-wasting activities – including social media in addition to football – and do all assignments. The Professor also showed a need to renew one’s body by exercise and healthy feeding, and the mind through reading and writing. To renew the heart, he told them to be cheerful always and build good relationships, while the soul would be kept vibrant by prayer and meditation. He also advised undergraduates to avoid antisocial activities such as cultism and show respect for others. Students who had excelled by scoring GPAs of 4.5 and above on a 5-point scale in the 2017/2018 academic session were inducted into the Vice Chancellor’s Honours Roll. Their names are Amarachi Moses, Comfort Joe, Jemima-Naomi Ben, Ifeanyi Akudike, Elozino Avura, Inimfon Okoh, Natasha Ugochukwu, Christiana Obaila, Etoro-Abasi Enobong and Ejiroghene Kesiena. Thirty-seven students who scored from 4.0 to 4.49 were listed in the honours rolls of their respective faculties. Also honoured were two students who won the 2019 Mother Tongue Day Essay Competition hosted by the Humanities faculty. Final Year Students of Ritman College who had the highest scores in different subjects received certificates of excellence from the University Visitor, Senator Emmanuel Essien. Among them, Miss Priscilla Akpanyah came tops, having emerged the best in five subjects, followed by Abasiekeme Michael. Highpoint of the day was oath-taking by 94 matriculating students. The event was heralded by a novelty football match between RU and St. Joseph Major Seminary, Ikot Ekpene on the preceding Wednesday. In attendance on the matriculation day were a former Vice Chancellor of UNIUYO, Prof Comfort Ekpo as well as Professors Ntiedo Umoren, Emmanuel Owoduokit and Charles Ogbodo. Senators Anietie Okon and Effiong Bob also graced the occasion. Bob is Chairman, Board of Trustees, while Umoren was first Dean in RU.

Edidiong Esara 25/03/2019

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