Recently, Lagos State through the state Assembly approved the Transmutation of the State Polytechnic to a University of Science and Technology. Barely one week after signing of the bill by the Governor, HE Babajide Sanwoolu, NUC issued a certificate for the take-off of the university.
Lagos State Polytechnic was established to promote the technical, vocational education and training, technology transfer as well as skills development to enhance the socio- economic advancement of the country.
Polytechnic education, which is a bedrock of development, is faced with a myriad of challenges. These include poor funding, deplorable infrastructure, inadequate manpower as well as absence of national commission for polytechnics and discrimination.
Universally, polytechnic education is meant to provide technical learning that could assist a society in meeting its industrial aspirations. It is however, sad that the sector is currently passing through a difficult phase.
Clearly, Polytechnic education was created to take care of middle level manpower.
Now, that Lagos State government have scrapped the tertiary institution that provides training for this set of level of manpower, the state needs to be innovative about the new template to be adopted for the running of the University.
Lagos State is rich in capital and human resources, and a such, innovation should be adopted in the running of Lagos State University of Science and Technology. National Diploma (ND) programmes should be sustained and maintain in the new universities. This clears the air on middle Manpower.
Those with ND come at 200 level, and 100 level through JAMB.
HND is actually the programme that has caused so much pain to the graduates of Polytechnics.
Students who possess HND, can always come in for a special bridge course of 12 months to have their B.Tech. While we await the President’s Signature to abolish the dichotomy between HND and B.Sc.
Maintaining the ND, gives this University a unique set-up from all conventional universities.
Also, the university should adopt specialised courses in the field of Engineering, Technology, Sciences and Entrepreneurship.
Certificate and transcript processing of defunct LASPOTECH should be reorganised to online. Currently, the process is cumbersome.
The moratorium period should be at least five (5) years to wind down LASPOTECH.
Adequate funding should be provided for the academic staff for further studies.
The Alumni Association should be well carried along with the implementation processes.
Adequate funding should be provided for salaries and other cost. Because, the school will no longer have enough IGR for at least, the next 5 years.
The gesture of the government to allow the leadership of the defunct Lagos State Polytechnic midwife the transmutation process and by bringing industrial crisis caused by previous administration to an end is a movement in the right direction.
- Hassan Temidayo
A former student of Laspotech and academic staff of Yaba College of Technology writes in from Ikorodu.