By Moji Danisa
With Technology being the present and future of nations, many countries are putting in more money into research and education in this field.
While many Nigerian institutions are now concentrating on STEM education at the secondary school levels, many had wondered if the tertiary were doing enough, beyond the theoretical, to absorb students who want to compete with technologically advanced countries.
With more Nigerian Students tilting towards the sciences and many interested in Robotics, the University of Lagos is one of the first institutions to embrace Robotics and is not only engaging students in the branch of science but also training and engaging future generation in preparation for further studies in the field.
Thanks to a Vice Chancellor who is a thorough academic and visioner, UNILAG is many leaps ahead of it’s peers.
The Vice Chancellor, Professor Oluwatoyin Ogundipe is the man championing the supremacy of science and technology and has not only created an academic pedestal for Robotic Studies but also a creative outlet for Primary and Secondary school students interested in forging a future in Robotics by giving them a head start through practical training initiatives.
One of such initiatives is the Coding and Robotics Summer School.
This year’s edition, sponsored by Engr Funmi Ayinke Waheed Adekojo, a mechanical engineer, entrepreneur, foremost proponent of STEM education and philanthropist, held at the UNILAG Artificial Intelligence and Robotics Laboratory, (AiRoL) at the UNILAG campus in Lagos.
Young children put on display amazing and exciting robots and were on hand to explain how they worked to the pleasure of parents, instructors and the general public.
The VC explained that the initiative had produced a great team which has represented Nigeria in many Robotic competitions home and abroad and came 1st at the First Leggo League (FLL), a National Robotics competition. Out of 132 teams drawn from six the Geo Political Zones, Team AiRol emerged 1st in Robot design, 3rd in Robot performance and as 3rd overall best team in the competition. He disclosed that the all girls team will be representing Nigeria at a virtual Robotics competition to be hosted in Greece later this year.
The UNILAG VC thanked Funmi Ayinke Adekojo, whom he described as an academic per Excellence, for sponsoring the competition.
in her response, Engr Waheed Adekojo promised to continue to support the programme because the importance of the sciences in building a more competitive society, cannot be over-emphasised.