Gombe State University(GSU) on Saturday conferred degrees and diplomas on 3,958 graduates at a combined convocation ceremony, among whom were 51 students who made first class.
The reward of the outstanding graduates was instant: Access Bank, whose CEO Herbert Wigwe was given honorary doctorate degree, offered them jobs. Governor Ibrahim Dankwambo also announced jobs for the 51 and a gift of N100,000 each.
The Vice-chancellor of the university, Prof. Ibrahim Umar, said the convocation was for the 6th 7th,8th and 9th sets of graduates.
He said the certificates awarded the graduates were 37 Postgraduate Diplomas in Education and four Master’s Degree for the 2013/2014 to 2016/2017 sessions.
Apart from the 51 who graduated in first class, 864 graduated in the second class upper division class, 1,945 were in second class lower division, 1,038 had third class and 60 had pass.
He congratulated the graduates and their parents for the successful completion of their studies and wished them success in their future endeavours.
Umar said that the university had recorded an increase in students’ admissions, adding that the undergraduate admissions rose from 1,545 in the 2013/2014 session to 3,636 in the 2017/2018 session.
“Two new undergraduate programmes in Human Anatomy and Human Physiology were introduced in 2017/2018 academic session.
“To further increase access to tertiary Education, Diploma and Part Time Degree programmes were introduced in 2015/2016 and 2016/2017 academic sessions,’’ he said.
According to him, over 2,500 students have been admitted in the two programmes in the last two years and admission to remedial programmes has also expanded to 2,000.
He commended Gov. Ibrahim Dankwambo for his financial support to the institution.
Gov Ibrahim Dankwambo, promised to continue to support the development of the university and other tertiary institutions in the state
He commended the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TEFUND) for contributing to the development of the university through the provision of physical infrastructure, staff training and other interventions.
The highlight of the ceremony was the conferment of honorary doctorate degrees on four Nigerians, among whom was the Managing Director, Chief Executive Officer of the Access Bank Nigeria PLC, Mr Herbert Wigwe.
Wigwe, who received an Honorary Doctor of Administration award, commended the university for the remarkable achievement.
“ In spite of the security challenges in the region, the state government has put up a remarkable infrastructure in the institution in spite of its lean resources,” he said.
Wigwe also commended the graduates for the feat they achieved in their academic pursuits and assured them that with perseverance, the sky was their limit.
“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a step, it may take some of you several years after graduating to settle,” he said.
Other Nigerians honoured at the ceremony were Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the UN, and Dr Christopher Kolade, a former Nigerian High Commissioner to the UK.
Another award recipient was the Emir of Gombe, Dr Abubakar Shehu, who is the University Chancellor.
The university conferred honorary Doctor of Administration on Abubakar and Hajia Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary- General of UN, while Dr Christopher Kolade received honorary Doctor of Letters degree at the ceremony. (NAN)