Recognising the pivotal role that a conducive living environment plays in shaping a student’s academic journey, the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (Fund) has embarked on a mission to redefine the student living experience.
The Fund’s commitment stems from a belief that fostering a supportive and secure residence enhances the overall educational experience, cultivating an environment where students can thrive, connect, and excel.
LEADERSHIP reports that shortage of housing deficits across higher institutions in Nigeria has been one of the challenges facing tertiary education students.
Many students pursuing higher education especially, in public universities, are facing a serious accommodation crisis, while residential facilities in most of the public universities fall far short of the demand from students.
But the executive secretary of TETFund, in a recent interview said he was exploring ways to build more student hostels.
“The issue of hostel accommodation is something we’ve done a lot of research and also, we are now intervening.
“It is true that many of our institutions only roughly between 15 to 20% of the students housed on campus and this is not acceptable and just as I said, exposing them to all sorts of vices.
“Even the fact that you will have to live in class in school, to their accommodations at nights and all of that and you don’t really know what happens to them when they leave because they can also be impersonated and all sorts of devices.
“You have cases of students participating in armed robbery. Students Engaged in drug trafficking and all sorts of dishonorable behavior especially ladies and so on. So yes, we prioritize the issue of hostel accommodation,” he had said.
However, as part of its efforts to elevate education through thoughtfully designed hostel accommodations, the Federal Government has commissioned two hostels in Federal Polytechnic Oko, Anambra State.
The male and female hostels, valued at N550,000,000.00, are sponsored by TETfund of its 2020 Special Intervention.
The chairman of the Senate Committee on Petroleum, Downstream and member of the Senate Committee on Education and TETFund, Sen. Ifeanyi Ubah, inaugurating the facilities, reiterated the National Assembly’s willingness to continue working harmoniously with the Executive towards making the nation’s educational institutions globally competitive for economic and technological development.
Ubah, representing Anambra South Senatorial district in the National Assembly, also assured that the Senate would continue to provide the necessary support to the Fund by enacting legislation to advance tertiary education in Nigeria further.
“I wish to use this opportunity to assure you that the 10th Senate, under the leadership of the Senate President, Distinguished Senator Godswill Akpabio and indeed, the entire National Assembly will continue to provide the necessary support to the Fund through the enactment of legislations that would further advance tertiary education in Nigeria.
“Aside from support for physical infrastructure and provision of equipment at the institution, TETFund has also sponsored 101 lecturers for PhD from the Polytechnic in foreign and local institutions totalling N487,527,656.10.
“TETFund has also sponsored 60 lecturers for Masters Degrees in both foreign and local institutions totalling N293,102,460.00, while 90 staff have been sponsored for Conference Attendance locally and abroad at a total cost of N111,471,159.50.”
The lawmaker urged the Polytechnic to take full advantage of the facilities and make good use of them for the educational and vocational development of the students.
Echono, on his part said the projects executed between 2021 and 2023 would go a long way to stem the tide of negative influences on the student youth population and address security concerns in the Polytechnic community.
Represented by the Director, Monitoring and Evaluation Department, Arc Babatunde Olajide, Echono said the Polytechnic thoughtfully prioritised the projects to address the aforementioned concerns as well as provide requisite infrastructure for the students wellbeing.
“In line with the “Renewed Hope” agenda of President Bola Tinubu administration, the Fund is committed to ensuring the sustenance of funding to all public beneficiary institutions with a view to ensuring our institutions attain high global ranking in delivery of academic content,” he said.
While commending the Polytechnic management and project team for ensuring quality delivery and sticking to terms, Echono appealed that the facilities be put to their proper use and maintained to serve generations to come.
Earlier, Rector of the Polytechnic, Engr. Dr. Francisca Nwafulugo described the hostels’ commissioning as a giant step in the institution’s quest to accommodate more of its students within the polytechnic towards enhancing their security and well-being.
“These hostel buildings made up of 26 rooms each with the capacity of accommodating 208 students altogether are equipped with modern facilities which are tailored to give our students a decent and conducive accommodation space to achieve peak performance academically.
“In addition to these hostels, we also have the School of Environmental Design and Technology Building which is a capital funded project as part of what will be commissioned today,” she added.
Appreciating Tetfund for making it possible for an increased number of students to have safe and decent accommodation within the Polytechnic, the Rector said TETfund had added value to the polytechnic in so many ways and areas.