FUOYE CENTRE FOR ENTREPRENEURSHIP DEVELOPMENT AND SUPPORT SERVICES (CEDSS)

THE VISION AND MISSION OF THE CENTRE.

 

THE VISION

 To fully industrialized Nigeria through the catalytic and pioneering role of micro/small/medium enterprises.

 THE MISSION

To promote entrepreneurial culture and mind-set, skill acquisition, self-employment, economic independence and self-actualization.
The Centre’s approaches and engagement with the business aim to provide insight into the tools, techniques and frameworks for managing all functional areas of business enterprises, including production, marketing, personnel and finance; developing skills of potential entrepreneurs to successfully start, expand, diversify, and manage a business enterprise as well as link them with financial institutions for start-up capital.

From inception, the philosophy and the core values of FUOYE have been building the character and innovating on what had been. In other words, entrepreneurship education had been the major focus of management and it was for this reason that entrepreneurship has been embraced by almost all the developed countries and its capabilities and efficacy in springing up economies is not in doubt.

 Entrepreneurial education has been identified as the most potent tool to equip school leavers for wider employment opportunities and turn them to catalysts for job creation. It is, therefore, incumbent on the Higher Education Institutions to design training syllabus that will be adequately and continually relevant to the demands of the labour market / industries and the ever changing needs of the society. In response to this, the Federal Ministry of Education and Nigerian Universities Commission (NUC) have continued to encourage tertiary institutions to set up dedicated Centre for Entrepreneurship Development, to provide the missing practical workplace, skills and training that will equip graduates to be self-reliant, self-employed and become employers of labour. The challenge, therefore, is to be able to create the platform that will expose undergraduates to workplace environment, innovativeness, risk bearing, product development, business start-up and management.

   EXPERIENCES SO FAR

Experiences within the last two academic sessions have shown that Entrepreneurial Education has become an integral part of the academic curriculum of Federal University, Oye-Ekiti. This programme at the moment is embedded in the General Studies Unit of the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, has been able to conceptualize and drive the synopsis and course contents for pedagogy, as well as introduce and sensitize students on the benefits inherent in self worth and actualization.

The programme has succeeded in inculcating in the students the spirit of entrepreneurship and attitudinal change aimed at engendering the right values in them. Not only have the students been taken through the rudiments of Entrepreneurship values and philosophy, they have also learnt some trades, which, given the necessary impetus, would make them masters of the trades, and in compliance with the National Universities Commission desire, the Students are presently being mobilized for the launching of the “Students Entrepreneur Club” known as “NETWORK FOR AFRICAN STUDENTS ENTREPRENEURS” (NASE). Executive Committees have been put in place and the draft Constitution of the Club is ready for review and ratification.    

The underlying philosophy of the Entrepreneurship programme of the University is “to produce self-reliant and creative graduates; to give them the leverage to become job creators through Entrepreneurial Education, with a cutting edge technology as part of their discipline.”

To achieve this lofty goal, there is, therefore, the need to take further steps.

 MODUS OPERANDI

It will be important to form a Curriculum Development Team with the sole responsibility to connect interdisciplinary curve round the existing Faculties and Departments in the University. It has become imperative, therefore, for the University to come up with a more improved and appropriate curriculum, particularly for the Vocational Skills Development arm   of the Centre. This shall be done in collaboration with all the Departments and Faculties.

 It is also important to observe global trend which supports enterprise facilitation as best introduced at the school levels. Critical components of academic curriculum are the new technological and socioeconomic orders such as outsourcing, off shoring, e-commerce etc. The contributions of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises to employment generation in Europe and North America are also models we shall study and learn from. Unlike academic programme, Entrepreneurial training is activity/competency based module, designed specifically to help the students think and expand their thinking frontiers constantly along the line of value creation with activities to connect classroom program contents to real life situation. It will also introduce students to career exploration modules as well as stimulate students’ growth in service, teamwork, goal setting, ethics and business management best practices.

 ABOUT THE CENTRE

Entrepreneurship and Development Support Service Centre is a not-for-profit but outreach and training arm of the Federal University, Oye-Ekiti campus and with a branch at the Ikole campus. The centre was established in 2013 with the broad objective of driving efforts to make Federal University, Oye-Ekiti an internationally recognized entrepreneurial University and as a creative response to high levels of unemployment in Nigeria. This will position the Centre to offer relevant support services to business development especially at the start-up phase. This will involve providing advisory services, management / technical guidance, business and market information / database e.t.c. This will make it possible for the Centre to assist students with entrepreneurial potentials to transform ideas to business.

 CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT

Entrepreneurship education serves as a panacea to social economic problems. The present situation in Nigeria posed serious threats and challenges to both government and well meaning citizens. These socio-economic problems call for different strategies and actions for it to be ameliorated. Entrepreneurship education has been embraced by almost all the developed countries and its capabilities and efficacy in springing up economies is not in doubt. It is believed that refocusing education system will immensely contribute in developing the spirit and culture of entrepreneurship in country. The methodology here involves review of the current situation especially existing education policies and highlights the need for departure by studying some models that can be applied. It was discovered that the current education system is deficient in providing the necessary impetus for development. It also finds out that same problems keep escalating despite various efforts by the government to review policies and programmes in the past. The uniqueness of the paper is providing entrepreneurship education framework as an explanation of what and how it should be rather than what it is. It also challenges policy makers on the need to refocus their policies in problem solving rather than maintaining the status quo.

KEY OBJECTIVES:

The aim of the Entrepreneurial Education as espoused in the curriculum is to provide FUOYE students with opportunities to:

acquire knowledge and develop skills necessary to plan and begin a venture.

embrace entrepreneurship as a way of life and be the change agents to bring about employment generation.

 Course Work – Using innovative teaching methods to improve students’ creativity and analytic way of solving real life problems – practical coaching approach. It is important to introduce students to theoretical knowledge of the business skills. Theoretical entrepreneurship courses are, therefore, carried out through simulation of business environment to allow students acquire skills in the following areas:  

  • Nurturing Business Ideas
  • Innovation, Creativity and Invention
  • Financing the Entrepreneurial Ventures
  • Cash Flow Management
  • Business Start-up Skill
  • E-Commerce and Entrepreneurship
  • Talent Management
  • Sales and Marketing Planning
  • Information and Communication Technology

TAKE-OFF STAGE:

The Centre is taking off with the following trades:

  • Fashion Designing
  • Hairdressing(with Manicure and Pedicure)
  • Furniture and Woodwork
  • Catering and Confectionery Services (incorporating Pop Corn production)
  • General Electrical (Computer Repairs, GSM and general Electrical installation)
  • Plumbing
  • Leather Works and shoe making
  • Screen Printing and graphic Arts
  • Photography
  • Knitting
  • Web Design.
  • Textile (kampala and Adire) Production

Agro business such as Grass Cutter Rearing, Flory Culture, Maize Farming, Cassava cultivation and Garri Processing as well as Mushroom seeds culturing and cultivation shall be encouraged in Ikole Campus.

Other business areas such as Painting and Decoration, Fruit juice as well as Block making shall also be looked into.

The Centre is also expected to bid for jobs within and possibly, outside the University and allow students to be involved in the execution of such jobs.

 MANAGEMENT CONSULTANCY SERVICES

The Centre shall engage in Support Services to enhance the fulfilment of the Vision and Mission of FUOYE through an open- window knowledge transfer and assistance to governments (Federal, State and Local Government) as well as the Organised Private Sector in enhancing the productivity and efficiency of their personnel.

FUOYE shall prepare students to be proactive, flexible and be able to adapt to the changing demands of modern economy. The key activities of the Centre are entrepreneurship training, business enhancement programme, workshops to teach and spread the message of entrepreneurship, innovation, creativity and development research. Learning shall be directed towards developing in our students those skills, competencies, understandings, and attributes which will equip them to be innovative, and to identify, create, and successfully manage personal, community, business, and work opportunities.

 COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIP

The most successful Enterprise Education projects are those based on strong bonds between institutions and their local communities, especially the business and industrial communities. These engagements help to:-

  • Connect the work of the institution and the skills acquired to the wider world of the community and the work place, and even to the demands of the competitive global environment;
  • Extend the range of opportunities available to students beyond what the institution alone can provide;
  • Develop relationships between students and community members that results in an ongoing mentoring arrangements and further involvement of students in work or community activities;
  • Strengthen community supports for FUOYE and the curriculum it provides;
  • Effective engagement of the community in Enterprise education programmes and activities indicates that the institution needs to consult and evolve relevant community organisations, businesses and individuals from the onset, rather than seeks support after things are in place.
  • Create sense of ownership which serves as a prerequisite for commitment, because people and organisations are more likely to embrace those things they helped to shape.

BENEFITS TO FUOYE COMMUNITIES

  • Prospective partners have the opportunity to participate in the education and skills development of workers and future leaders.
  • Mentoring relationships have value for all the parties involved.
  • Mentors generally gain and learn as much from the experiences as the students who receive their advice
  • Institution-community relationship involving business and industry provides students with a better understanding of the workplace and the competitive demands of the economy, and enable employers to discover the skills and capacities of students.

  OTHER ACTIVITIES

Entrepreneurial skills and attributes shall be developed through activities that are not strictly part of the timetable, curriculum, but instead, are institution-supported activities in which students must be involved. Some students have shown interest in dancing, drama and songs writing. Such students shall be assisted through the Theatre Arts Department where their talents and innate abilities and gifts shall be sharpened.

  SPECIAL" QUICKWIN" PROJECTS

The Centre will establish Table Water processing plant and a standard FUOYE Bakery. Unarguably, the University is presently a "work-in-progress" and as such, there are many areas begging for attention and business opportunities particularly areas such as Land Scalping and Lawn Care as well as refuse collection. The Centre shall maximize these "waste to wealth" potentials for the benefits of the students. The Centre shall be relevant to the needs and aspiration of our immediate communities. Projects and products would be marketable in and around our local communities and most importantly, meet the Goals and Objectives, Vision and Mission of FUOYE.

Start small and aim big” shall be the watch word of the Centre. The staff of the Centre shall be committed and serious minded individuals, with proving records of determination to succeed and move the university forward. The best way to build our future leaders is to turn FUOYE graduates into active producers, creators, inventors, and employers of labour. Our communities can only be developed by involving all members as productive and valuable contributors to the economy, not just consumers. It is by so doing that the education of our youths can be soundly result oriented and rewarding.

In summary, the Centre shall aim at achieving the following goals and objectives:

  • Enhance productivity through agric, technical and I.C.T skills acquisition.
  • Make students master, at least, two vocational trade that can guarantee self-reliance
  • Equip students with the needed knowledge to make them successful entrepreneurs;
  • Empower the youths in and around the community through trickle down and multiplier effects
  • Provide an alternative means of finance for interested students within the University;
  • Serve as Management Consultancy arm of the University, with the aim of advancing knowledge and excellence through training, workshops, symposia and seminars to personnel of government as well as the private sector.

 Ultimately, the Centre is expected to run five distinct programmes

  • Vocational skills acquisition,
  • Students’ Work Study programmes
  • Entrepreneurship Development programme
  • Management Supports Services
  • Marketing FUOYE

 Support Services, which shall be the Consultancy arm of the Centre is expected to generate revenue for the University in the areas of in-house training workshops, seminars, symposia as well as outreaches for MDAs of Governments at all levels and the private Sector, etc.

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