The President and Chief Executive Officer of Montefiore Medicine, United States of America, Professor Phillip Ozuah, has donated a sum of one million dollars to the University of Ibadan.
This was confirmed in a statement personally signed by the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Idowu Olayinka and made available to the newsmen on Monday.
Professor Ozuah made the donation while delivering a keynote address at a fundraising ceremony held in the Board Room of the College of Medicine.
Professor Olayinka, who hinted that the donation would serve as a catalyst for the timely construction of an ultra-modern Student Hostel estimated to cost about two billion and five hundred million Naira said it has confirmed the Alumni Association’s capacity to effectively manage public universities.
The Vice-Chancellor who aligned himself with the position of an eminent Geographer, Professor Akin Mabogunje on the management of public universities proffered that the only solution to the lingering ASUU crisis is for the regulatory bodies to provide a sustainable platform for funding.
According to him, the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), and other three university-based unions have been on strike for the better part of the last six months and there is no end in sight.
”The fundamental cause of this protracted strike can be attributed to the inadequate funding of public universities in Nigeria.
”An interrogation of this crisis has been traced back to 1975 when the then Federal Military Government took over the four hitherto regional universities at Nsukka, Zaria, Ile Ife, and Benin City in addition to the two Federal Universities at Ibadan and Lagos while simultaneously creating, by fiat, seven new Federal Universities which are now referred to as the Second Generation Universities (Ilorin, Port Harcourt, Calabar, Jos, Maiduguri, Sokoto and Bayero Kano). Ibadan, Lagos, Nsukka, Zaria, Ife and Benin constitute the First Generation Universities by this classification template. In effect, from owning and funding two Universities the Federal Government suddenly had 13 universities to manage without a corresponding increase in funding.
”That marked the beginning of the decline of the glorious era of the Nigerian University system.
”It is doubtful if the crisis bedevilling the Nigerian (public) universities can be addressed on a sustainable basis until the funding issue is tackled robustly.”
Professor Olayinka recalled that about a decade ago, Professor Akin Mabogunje suggested that the Federal Government of Nigeria should hand over the University of Ibadan to the Alumni to manage.
He opined by adding that his proposal then adopted would put an end to incessant strikes of ASUU and other unions in the public universities.
The proposal, according to him is for the overall benefit of the country.
Dr. Philip O. Ozuah, MD, PhD
Dr. Philip O. Ozuah is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Montefiore Medicine, the umbrella organisation for the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, and Montefiore Health System’s 13 member hospitals, 300 ambulatory sites, and 7.5 million patient encounters per year.
A nationally recognised physician, leader, executive, researcher, teacher and author, Dr. Ozuah leads an organisation with 10,000 physicians and 53,000 employees serving a diverse group of patients. A National Institutes of Health (NIH)–funded researcher and award-winning educator, he also served as Professor and University Chairman of Pediatrics at Albert Einstein College of Medicine and Physician-in-Chief of Children’s Hospital at Montefiore (CHAM).
In his role, Dr. Ozuah has expanded access to care for underserved communities, recruited and cultivated outstanding talent, advanced programs of excellence, fostered innovations in medicine and science, and improved financial and operational performance by integrating care across a rapidly growing and evolving Montefiore system that sees over 7.5 million patient interactions a year with $8 billion in annual revenues.
Under his leadership, Montefiore Health System’s specialties have ranked in the top 1 percent of the nation’s hospitals, and CHAM was recognised as one of “America’s Best Children’s Hospitals” according to U.S. News & World Report.
Dr. Ozuah also leads the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, one of the nation’s premier centers for research, medical education and clinical investigation. Einstein receives more than $200 million in annual research awards from the NIH and is home to 800 M.D. students, 190 Ph.D. students, 120 students in the combined M.D./Ph.D. program, and 250 postdoctoral research fellows.
In addition to his research and clinical accomplishments, Dr. Ozuah has been recognised repeatedly by Modern Healthcare as one of the “Top Physician Executives” in the country. He has also been recognised nationally for excellence in patient care and medical education, including as an inductee into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society and a two-time recipient of the Academic Pediatric Association’s prestigious Helfer Award for Innovation in Medical Education.
Dr. Ozuah earned his medical degree from the University of Ibadan, Nigeria, a Master’s Degree in Education from the University of Southern California, and a PhD in Educational Leadership and Administration from the University of Nebraska–Lincoln. He completed his Pediatric Internship and Residency at Albert Einstein College of Medicine/Montefiore, and his Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the University of Southern California School of Medicine.