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Unizik Business School begins workshop for students in Royal Academy of Engineering project

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By Our Correspondent

Unizik Business School (UBS) in partnership with the Royal Academy of Engineering, UK has kicked off the training workshop phase for the first year of the two-year grant funded project.

The project which was launched by the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Charles Esimone, on Friday, December 2, 2022 in a hybrid ceremony held at the UBS Conference Hall, is aimed at improving access to electric power in Nigeria by catalyzing the employability and entrepreneurial impact of Nigerian graduate engineers in the electricity industry, this paper reports.

Following a rigorous selection process carried out on Thursday, 8th December, 2022, fifty 400-level students from Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka, the hub school and three spoke institutions – Abia State Polytechnic, Aba; Federal Polytechnic, Nekede; and Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Uli – were selected for intensive training in business skills, entrepreneurial skills and installation of solar electricity systems.

After brief welcome remarks from the Team Lead, Dr. Chinedu Onyeizugbe, Deputy Director, UBS; and his Co-Awardee, Engr. Ugochukwu Ifediora, the first day of the training began on Monday, January 30, 2023, with a session on Managerial Skills for Engineers, facilitated by Prof. Ellis Idemobi, a former vice-chancellor of Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Igbariam.

This session was followed by two sessions on Entrepreneurship and Business Plan facilitated by Dr. Ikem Odumodu, former Director-General, Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON) & former CEO/MD, May & Baker Nigeria Plc, either side of a Lunch Break. With the objective of the project firmly in view, the workshop sessions have been tailored to be interactive and conversational, with emphasis on the use of practical, relatable scenarios to pass key concepts across, it was gathered.

Participants were also encouraged to ask questions during each session, with the daily workshop sessions continuing till Saturday, February 4, 2023. These sessions will be facilitated and supported by the UK partner institution, Nottingham Trent University, domain specialists from academia, as well as industry experts who will share their knowledge and wealth of experience on a variety of topics.

They include: Vishak Dudhee, Company Manager, V-Lab Limited, UK who will speak on Introduction to Residential Energy Simulation; Paveen Chorghade, CEO, Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC) who will facilitate a session on Best Practices in Electricity Distribution Network; Engr. Dan Ilo, COO, Fedironic Global Solutions Ltd., an expert in Solar Systems Installation who will supervise the practical field work for the workshop participants on the last two days of the programme.

Also, Prof. Solomon Nwigbo, former Head, Department of Mechanical Engineering, Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka who will facilitate a session on Industrial Equipment and Safety; and Sunday Edirin, Branch Controller, Bank of Industry (BoI), Awka, Anambra State who will enlighten the participants on the modalities for Accessing SMEs Loans from BoI, amongst others.

At the end of the week-long intensive workshop, it is expected that the participating students would have been thoroughly equipped for productive, impactful careers and entrepreneurial quests in the Nigerian electricity industry.

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