By Joseph Erunke
A PRIVATELY-owned Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, STEM and Artificial Intelligence centre, the first of its kind in Nigeria, has been set up.
Christened Skill G Innovation Centre for STEM Education, the Abuja centre is meant for the advancement of technical education, science and mathematics in Nigerian schools.
In an interactive session with the media, the Managing Director, Prof. Gregory Ibe, described it as a turnkey project company that would incubate and impart the idea of technical education.
“The basic aim for establishing the centre is to support all educational institutions in Nigeria involved with our programmes to deepen their knowledge of design, manufacturing, assemblage and training of technical backstopping of all equipment in the institutions,” he said.
While saying that the company was open to all others with interest in STEM education, Prof. Ibe said: “The tradition of ensuring that skill-based education returns to the centre stage of our education and that practical education dominates the essence of our education system, is what over the years, has culminated in what you witnessed here today.”
He gave more reasons he initiated the centre: “Time was when the government of Nigeria in the 1960s and 1970s placed very high premium on technical and practical education.
“Time also was when the tradition was totally abandoned even when the need for it heightened and our education system dropped into a state of poor hope for productivity, impact and relevance to the society. After that trend when technical colleges were commonplace, we had a disheartening harvest of paper qualified educated persons who never had the opportunity of skilled training. “We had that lapse at a time when the rest of the world upped their emphasis on skill-based education. It was at such point in the education history of this great country that Skill G came to the rescue of filling a gap that needed not exist.”
According to him: “For about 29 years, the company has championed the sustenance and revival of the glimmer of light in technical education and skill-based curriculum.”