Federal government has been urged to employ science, engineering and technology (SET) as a potent tool for poverty reduction and sustainable development of the country.
This appeal was contained in a communique issued at the end of the 6th annual international conference of the Institute of Technology of Kwara State Polytechnic, Ilorin.
The theme of the two-day conference is “Revitalizing Engineering, Technological and Science Education towards Nigeria’s Economic Recovery.”
The communique which was signed by the chairman and secretary of the local organising committee, Engr Alagbe Michael and Dr Olatunji Adebisi, respectively added that: “Education remains a critical factor for speedy development of the country, thus, Science, Engineering and technology (SET) remain vital elements for achieving sustainable development and poverty reduction.
“That, if Nigeria economy would recover via SET sectors, challenges like deficient legislative framework, regulatory ambiguities, unrealistic approaches, policies and regulatory gaps that are largely dependent on political will and conducive environment requires a more comprehensive approach to deal with especially through academic institutions awareness such as this conference,” the communique stated.
According to the communique, presenters at the conference agreed that engineering, technology and science courses are central to national development and economic empowerment.
It added that the presenters emphasised the need for every Nigerian to be conscious of happenings globally in order to meet up with international trends and space on ETS education which ultimately would help in the quick recovery of the nation’s economy.
Noting that the fields of engineering, technology and science education play critical roles in driving economic growth and sustainable development of any nation, the communique added that: “Our educational institutions, particularly the polytechnics have a crucial role to play in equipping our youths with the knowledge, skills and mindset necessary to thrive in the modern world.”
“We must foster an environment that encourages innovation, critical thinking and problem solving, thereby empowering our students to become active contributors to the nation’s economic recovery.
“There is a need for a robust curriculum reform which will incorporate practical hand on training and exposure which will ensure that our graduates are not only well-educated but also job ready,” the communique added.