“On 18 January 1948, the first set of students, 104 in number, started receiving lectures at the University College Ibadan, at the Eleyele Temporary Site, previously used by the Military during the Second World War. The three Foundation Faculties were Arts, Science and Medicine. In reality, today is, therefore, the 70th birthday of the University of Ibadan.
“17 November 1948 was the day the first sod for the permanent site was turned by Sir Arthur Creech Jones. 17 November has since then been marked as the Founders’ Day. Happy anniversary to the founding fathers and all Great UItes”, Olayinka stated.
In preparation for the celebration of the 70th anniversary the institution, Olayinka disclosed that a committee would soon be inaugurated for the planning, coordination and execution of various activities to mark the milestone.
”Though 70 years in the life of the university is relatively young when compared with some universities across the world, some of which are as old as 700 years, UI must joyfully mark this milestone considering its contributions to national development. This is the university which has produced high caliber of human resource for Nigeria in particular and the world at large, as UI products are found in almost every part of the world doing very well. Indeed, we can confidently say our products are our pride as people believe that once this product is from Ibadan, it must be the best.
“Given its prestigious position in higher education in Nigeria, some people have said every educated Nigerian is either a direct or indirect product of UI. This is because if you did not attend UI, you must have been taught somewhere by someone who attended UI or who was taught by someone who trained in UI. Therefore, UI belongs to all Nigerians. In the last 70 years of our academic excellence, our achievements are numerous and impactful as it can be seen in the quality of our products in every sphere of life. Therefore, we feel it will not be a bad idea if we come together on this occasion to celebrate, reflect on the journey so far and plan for the future. We intend to bring back our old alumni for flashback and reminiscence, celebrate our icons and inspire the current students towards nothing but the best,” the vice chancellor stated.
Olayinka called on all alumni of UI to get ready for the epoch celebration, saying every alumnus should think about the contributions of the university to their lives with a view to giving back to the university that made them.
He announced that UI would be shopping for the sum of N70 billion as capital projects campaign, just as he expressed optimism that “the dream is achievable if all UI products are harnessed”.