President, Nigerian Academy of Engineering, Prof. Fola Lasisi has charged tertiary institutions to dwell more on research and innovative strategies that would aid technological and socio-economic advancement.
He delivered a lecture entitled: “Impactive and innovative approaches to Tertiary education and research” during the Third Research and Development Public Lecture, which held at Yaba College of Technology (YABATECH), Lagos.
“The challenge is to get tertiary institutions to be impactive, innovative and research-oriented.They should promote research and innovation which are crucial for the development of new solutions in the technological and socioeconomic areas,” he said
He noted that research and innovation are key factors that have impact on the society and fast-track development.
Decrying poor funding and the dwindling quality of education, he urged leaders in the education sector to critically look into vocational education as a viable avenue that drives development.
Lasisi said: “We need to put more money in education. Imagine, our legislators are earning more than we are spending on the sector. The quality of our education is not like before. Also, we need to explore vocational education because students will gain prerequisite skills needed for development in this era of technology.”
Earlier in his welcome address, Rector of the institution, Obafemi Omokungbe, who was represented by Dr Kehinde Osifala, stressed the need to train and encourage people to engage in innovative researches in various fields to enhance development.
He said: “Education and research are keys to the growth of a nation particularly a developing one like ours. And of course, this College will continue to expand the frontiers of research through development of human resources”.
Chairman of the occasion, Mr George Majekodunmi Okufi, a former Rector of YABATECH, decried the loss of societal values in tertiary institutions.
“We have lost our values here. We need to examine ourselves. The recent BBC Documentary is not befitting to us. We should design a system of tertiary education suitable for the African environment,” he said.
He, however, praised the YABATECH for “blazing a trail for others to follow”.