By STELLA UKWUOMA
At a meeting of all Vice Chancellors of Nigerian Federal Universities organised by the Executive Secretary of the Petroleum Technology Development Fund, Dr Bello Aliyu Gusau on Monday, the stakeholders decided that the overseas scholarship scheme of the Fund is no longer sustainable.
According to Dr. Gusau, the meeting was to interact and come up with modalities and terms of reference towards realising the new scholarship policy in collaboration with indigenous universities.
He stated that Nigerian universities were capable of training beneficiaries at both undergraduate and post-graduate levels.
However, this new policy according to him will not affect courses not offered in Nigerian universities, which the Fund intends to achieve through partnership agreements with select foreign universities.
“At the moment PTDF has decided that there will be no more undergraduate Overseas Scholarships.
“All undergraduate programmes for sponsorship by PTDF will now be done in Nigerian universities.
“For the post graduate progarmmes, the bulk of that for both the Masters and PhD’s will be done in Nigerian universities.
“We are also open to collaboration especially through the split-site PhD programme”, the PTDF Executive Secretary explained.
Responding, the Executive Secretary, National Universities Commission (NUC), Professor Abubakar Adamu Rasheed welcomed the PTDF initiative, which he said tallies with the vision to collectively reform post graduate training in Nigeria.
Furthermore, he commended PTDF for its sustained capacity building over the years in selected areas of the Nigerian educational system and the faith reposed in their capacity.
With this arrangement, it is expected that PTDF students will henceforth enjoy same scholarship opportunities in Nigerian universities supported by the Nigerian Universities Commission.