… as OAU College of Health Sciences clocks 50
A lecturer at the Redeemers University, Osun State, Prof. Onikepe Folarin has allayed the of cancer patients, urging them not to panic as there are better ways of handling their cases.
Folarin, who recently spoke at the 16th Annual Faculty of Dentistry Conference of Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Osun State, also urged the government to make policies that would help researchers in their works.
“We have enough medical facilities to treat those suffering from it (cancer). We have the facilities, We have the capabilities to do all the test they go abroad for in Nigeria”.
At the event, which also commemorated the 50th anniversary of the College of Health Sciences, OAU, Ile-Ife respectively, professionals from all walks of life who converged at the university’s BOOC Conference Hall deliberated under the theme “Dentistry without Borders”, providing perspectives on issues affecting dentistry and how to look deeper beyond immediate practices.
In her welcome address, the Dean of the university’s Faculty of Dentistry, Prof. Morenike Ukpong said that the faculty is a trailblazer as it was the first and only university in Nigeria to organise a Faculty Conference over two decades ago during the era, Prof. Eyitope Ogunbodede as acting Dean in 2001.
Ukpong recalled: “Prof. Ogunbodede learnt the strength and values such conferences can bring to health systems development during his stay in South Africa. And he replicated that here in OAU, Ile-Ife while his singular effort has led to the replication of Faculty Conferences within the university and in other institutions in Nigeria, it is one of the exemplary leadership that can come from the faculty.”
A brand specialist and Principal at Alder Consulting, Mr Leke Alder highlighted the importance of entrepreneurship in any profession. He said that self-esteem is very important in the game of success and urged the undergraduates to develop self-esteem. “Nobody is going to give you self-esteem, you give yourself”, he stated.
“That you graduated from the School of Dentistry doesn’t mean you automatically acquired a certificate in entrepreneurial competences. Business is another thing entirely. If you want to succeed in business, you have to learn how to recognise opportunities, learn how to take initiatives, learn how to network, to formulate vision, develop strategies, define your mission, iterate your corporate objectives, master your branding and flesh out your values.
“You must know how to hire. Some people are better off in a partnership than on their own. If you are going to go into business, at least draw a plan. A dental practice is a business where there are so many business plan templates available on the internet. I bet you will find one for dental practice. You will need to learn how to build an administrative structure, learn to manage your cash flow, how to market your service. The idea is to reduce the possibility of failure”, he counselled.
A Professor of African Religious Tradition and American Studies at the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard University, United States, Jacob Olupona lamented that unemployment rate in Nigeria is worrisome, as he canvassed cultural revolution.
“We have a crisis in Nigeria, we have people carrying certificates all around, but they have no job to do. It is not their fault, it is the systems that has failed them. So, those of us who are responsible for this learning process must begin to think about how best we can help those students.
“The kind of social revolution we need is not using coups or using guns but cultural revolution, so that we begun to know when people are deceiving us and telling us stories and lies”, he said.
A Professor of Archaeology, Adisa Ogunfolakan frowned at the lack of record keeping of teeth that have been removed by dentists in Nigeria. He explained that this was need in order as to proffer solutions to problems associated with teeth.
“No record keeping on teeth that have been removed by dentists in the past generations to see the nutritional changes. Dentists must work with historians; doing this will help to generate data for action plans”, he said.
The Chief Host, who is also the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Adebayo Simeon Banure applauded the initiatives of the organisers .
“The conference is to take proper initiatives with the sole purpose of achieving positive landmarks. This is a conference that bothers on cutting frontiers and open to new areas; cutting frontiers in the area of research and practice from all vices that is not in line with the university regulations”, he stated.