A Decade of Crescent University, Abeokuta: Thus far, thus good
To every dream, there is a dreamer--the central character in the dream. The hero or the villain. Ofttimes, a protagonist. He or she may also dream of other person(s) as central character in the vision. Also, every dream has a theme--the subject matter, the central message. Researchers posit that every individual has an average of between three and seven dreams per night which can, in fact, be philosophical, psychological or enigmatic in nature.
Because of their enigmatic nature, certain good dreams come to pass when they are religiously and methodically followed by the dreamer. But many dreams do not see the light of the day! Such will die before the dreamer is awake to recollect what they saw in their sleeping vision.
Put in perspective, the context painted here is both figurative and literary. Some build castles and mansion in their dreams. Some scale hurdles as others face written examinations in their dreams. Our world is a world of dreams vis-a-vis accomplishments.It is a world of reality borne out of vision. Even in waking life, people have dreams, they have visions, long sight. They project into the envisioned future. Unfortunately, only few pursue their dreams to the letter. But many allow their dreams to die even prematurely. Again, the dream-- in denotation or connotation--can be in sleeping or waking life!
Once upon a time, a dreamer had a vision to write his name in the book of history. The dream had to do with the dreamer and nobody else. He realised that books of history lived forever.He saw that those who chronicled their names never died forever.He reasoned that such people continued to live in the hearts and memories of generations after generations. So he consulted with the Creator in High Heavens. He said " Oh God in heaven, please guide me in Your Majesty that I may be remembered forever!" While the communion lasted, the visionary was inspired that if he could provide the next generation from his ocean of knowledge to drink, he would live forever.
So he reflected. On what platform can I give out of my ocean of knowledge to beneficiaries? He soliloquised in his telepathic conversation. He researched and found out that so many especially the youths who would constitute the next generation were thirsty but did not have access to the ocean to drink from. They wander from one end to another in vain. They did not get to the channel of the ocean of knowledge.
To accomplish his vision, after he retired from active global service as an accomplished jurist, the visionary went ahead disposing his belongings in exchange for cowries. Cowries to purchase the ocean.Ocean for drinking benefit of youngsters. The youngsters to lead the coming generation. The coming generation of global citizens. Global citizens to bring about peaceful co-existence in our world. Global citizens who would challenge the brilliant beasts tearing our World apart. The world that would eventually be a haven for all and sundry. He traded off all that he had for this mission.
In the beginning, his family members did not understand his dreams, because he also sold the home they were living in for this celestial mission so that they could move into rented apartments. He samonised them; he shared his dream; he convinced them that the only thing he would like to leave behind was his name cast in gold and in the book of history. So, fortuitously, they reasoned that all material things would not endure but a worthy name in the book of history would do.
Today, the vision has blossomed into a fountain. The fountain of knowledge and character. The vision is now a growing and glowing Crescent University, Abeokuta. The visionary is the Custodian, Founder and Proprietor of the great vision and the fountain of knowledge, the 'Prince Noble', Judge Abdul Jabbar Bola Ajibola.
Ten years ago, specifically on the 13th of June, 2005, the operating license to run the fountain of knowledge so called Crescent University, Abeokuta was granted by the National Universities Commission (NUC).The institution that began on an 11 acres of land now sits atop over 66 acres. It started with three colleges--College of Information and Communication Sciences(CICOT), College of Natural and Applied Sciences (CONAS) and College of Social and Management Sciences(COSMAS). These have blossomed into five colleges with the later establishment of Bola Ajibola College of Law (BACOLAW) as well as College of Environmental Sciences (COES).The School of Post-graduate Studies has also commenced operation after due approval and accreditation of its programmes by regulatory bodies. The first set of the master's programme will graduate in October 2015.
In addition to its existing colleges, the university is also proposing College of Medical and Health Sciences which will comprise Nursing and medicine. The university was motivated to start the college as Muslims were being denied admissions by some universities owned by Christians.Jaiz Bank had visited the site of the college on partnership interest. The Almighty Allah is our strength and hope.We are optimistic that He will see us through successful accomplishment of this all-important college in the nearest future.
Running a university is an ever money-gulping venture. More so, for a single individual who is neither a politician nor government contractor. This is basically why this university has to go through rigorous transition of development from conception through birth, the cradle, teething, toddling and now as a youngster.
The citadel of academic and moral excellence which started with 127 students now has about 2,000 enrolments from all states of Nigeria.With just few buildings at the inception, the university now has about 55 buildings (and still counting!) for academic, professional, administrative and domiciliary purposes.
Within a decade of its humble existence, Crescent University, Abeokuta has attracted testimonials from both with and outside, pointing to its steady growth. According to Dr Anthony Olajide Orebiyi, a senior lecturer in the department of mass communication, "a lot of people misunderstood this place especially if you are not within the environment and you are looking at the dome and other things from outside. These things look a little bit intimidating. In fact a lot of things they allow here( at Crescent University), when you go to Christian-based universities they don't allow it. The fear out there for those watching things from outside is that you are likely going to be Islamised but nobody is being Islamised, nobody is being forced to go to the mosque and worship".(Daily Sun, Tuesday June 2, 2015, pp 25-27.)
To the glory of Almighty Allah, we can now count our blessings. Crescent University, Abeokuta has turned out six sets of graduates, the first set being in 2009 .Ever since, our products have been doing us proud both home and abroad as some of our first-class products have been objectively interviewed by newspaper editors to ascertain the veracity of their impressive performance.
Deservedly, the university has also honoured creme-de-la-creme in the society as its alumni.These honorees have been great supporters and cheerleaders of our noble institution. People like Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Sir Kesington Adebutu, late Dr Molade Okoya-Thomas, late Dr Remi Olowude, Alhaji Sa'ad Abubakar, the Sultan of Sokoto, late Ado Bayero, the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Abdul Lateef Femi Okunnu (SAN), Mallam Yusuf Ali(SAN) to mention but a few. These colossi have also greatly supported the institution--from time to time--financially and morally.
A special tribute should also go to the late philanthropist, Alhaji Wahab Iyanda Folawiyo and his family for his great financial and moral support.
Worthy of record, also, is that the current Vice Chancellor, Prof. Ibraheem Gbajabiamila is one of the few academics specifically headhunted from the United Kingdom to further propel the wheel of academic progress of the university. His eagle-eyed scientific approach of the university is noticeable since his assumption of office on the first day of November, 2014.
For the journey thus far thus good, to God be the glory.
*Katib is of Public Relations Unit of Crescent University, Abeokuta/+2348096629914