The Federal University Oye-Ekiti (FUOYE) on Tuesday, graduated the first doctoral candidate from among many currently pursuing the programme in the University’s School of Post Graduate Studies (SPGS). The new PhD graduate, Atofarati Sunday Olumide, successfully defended his thesis undertaken in FUOYE’s Department of Soil Science and Land Management. Atofarati’s successful completion of hid PhD programme is unique for two major reasons. First, his Supervisor, who had guided him properly to achieve the enviable academic feat, is the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Prof. Abayomi Sunday Fasina. Second, Atofarati is the first student to have so far successfully completed and defended his PhD in FUOYE. The SPGS, FUOYE began in 2018 with the 2018/2019 academic session that created admission opportunities for many young adults and academics from several parts of the country. And in spite of the sad, unexpected disruption of the programmes by the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown that took the larger part of 2020, the SPGS, FUOYE has continued to thrived.
Atofarati’s PhD’s title, ‘Characterization, Classification, Land Evaluation and Sustainable Management of Soils in Ido/Osi Local Government Area of Ekiti State’, mainly explores the usefulness and properties of the soils in rural communities that make up Ido/Osi Local Government Area with a view to determining and deciphering how fertile the soils are and what crops could be most appropriate to grow on them. According to Atofarati, his thesis was inspired by the fact that Ido/Osi falls among the rural areas for agrarian activities which potentials have not been tapped: ” for more productive agricultural activities.” He added that part of his academic inquiries were: “grouping the soils that are similar, classifying them to know their use, in order to make it easy to identify them on the field and to know the best use that the soils can be used for and to have a better way to manage them, and for what purposes…” While commenting on the thesis presented by the new candidate, the External Supervisor, Prof. Senjobi Bolarinwa Ayoola of the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, Ogun State, said: “The candidate is examinable and he has done a tremendous work. He has a mastery of the subject area. I feel very happy about his findings, which will be most useful for humanity and to advance knowledge in his field.” Expressing his impression about the development, the Dean of SPGS, FUOYE, Prof. Omolehin Rapheal Ajayi, a Professor of Agricultural Economics, said: “You know we are a very young University, we are just about ten years old and we already have a PhD produced by the university, which is the highest academic qualification you get accross the world. “We are also grateful that the doctoral candidate was supervised by the VC and this shows the VC had been able to lay a very good foundation for the University in spite of his busy schedules. Also, we invited a Professor from a renowned University of Agriculture in Nigeria and that means that we are not just stage managing the process. And the student has done a very good job. “I want to tell you that more are coming, personally I am supervising two students who would soon be graduating. The staff are working and the school is a work in progress. Without any doubt, we are going to be the most dominant force to be reckoned with in this clime. We have high quality staff that can midewive the PhD programme and they are doing their best to contribute to the development of the nation and globally as well. Papers from this thesis will go to places and be published all over the world and everyone will see that we are really working”.