The National President of the Commonwealth Scholars and Fellows Alumni Association of Nigeria (COSFAN), Dr. Samuel Ekundayo has inaugurated the Association’s Lagos Chapter.
The inauguration ceremony which was held on Wednesday, July 12, 2023 at the Faculty of Science Boardroom, University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, also featured an information session on Commonwealth scholarships.
The hybrid event was witnessed by senior alumni members of the Association including Emeritus Professor Olugbenro Jegede (Chairman of the Association’s Board of Trustees), renowned Zoologist, Professor Rosemary Egomwan and Professor Julius Otusanya, among others.
During the ceremony, interim executive officers to handle the affairs of the Chapter were also announced. They are Dr. Temilola Oluseyi who will serve as coordinator as well as Dr. Michael Adedeji, Mrs. Stephanie Akinwoya and Miss. Lilian Efobi who are the General Secretary, Treasurer and Publicity Secretary, respectively.
According to Dr. Ekundayo, “the interim officers who got nominated after due consultations with the Board of Trustees and National Executive Committee of COSFAN are to steer the affairs of the Association within the next six months. They are expected to work closely with the South-West Coordinator, Dr. Adetoun Mustapha, conduct election for the Chapter’s Executive Committee and communicate same to the national body”.
The COSFAN National President explained that the Association’s objective is to ensure that opportunities are created for prospective scholarship seekers in order for them to impact society. His words “ …the body is an assemblage of noble, resource-driven intellectuals who are willing to give back to the society after their course of training in the United Kingdom”.
The former Commonwealth Split-site Scholar at the University of Bath, United Kingdom, highlighted some of the intervention programmes of the Association including health education interventions, school outreach, community engagement and advocacy to improve the education of the girl-child, mentoring, among others.
On his part, the Special Guest, Mr. Chikodi Onyemerela who spoke on behalf British Council, averred that the non-profit organization was delighted to be a part of the session. Mr. Onyemerela reiterated the Council’s commitment to providing opportunities for young people to reach their full potentials.
A Deputy Director at the Federal Ministry of Education, Dr. Julie Acholonu who led the discussion during the information session gave meaningful insights and guidelines on the scholarship process of awarding the scholarship.
Other speakers including Professor Olayinka Nwachukwu of the Michael Okpara University of Agriculture, Umudike; Head of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, National Orthopaedic Hospital, Dala, Kano State, Dr. Badia Maje Sayaddi and Project Manager Pivot-GIS, Lagos, Engineer Adewale Adeniyiwho also shared their vast wealth of experience with the audience.
Earlier in the day, the Executive Officers of the Association had paid a courtesy call on the Vice-Chancellor of the University Professor Folasade T. Ogunsola, OON, FAS in her office at the 11th floor of the Senate House.
While receiving the delegation, the Vice-Chancellor described the Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship has impacted a lot of academics and industry professionals since its establishment. She urged the leadership of the COFSAN to open up more opportunities for young academics, since the core objective of the association was to promote and advance education, scholarship, and excellence through the institution of awards in United Kingdom to deserving Nigerians.
The Commonwealth Scholars and Fellows Alumni Association of Nigeria (COSFAN), established since 1960, is a non-profit body consisting of Awardees (Scholarship and Fellowship) by the Commonwealth.