Great Ife alumni gather in Dallas

The Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University Prof. Bamitale Omole, Pro-Chancellor, OAU Prof. Roland Ndoma-Egba and several other distinguished Alumni of the Obafemi Awolowo University Ile-Ife, Nigeria have gathered in Dallas at the Hilton DFW Conference Center for the 8th Biennial International Reunion which is being hosted by the Dallas Chapter under the leadership of Mr. Deolu Esho. The three day event commenced with a social mixer suya at the Austin Ranch. The Alumni general meeting, a formal banquet and picnic also formed additional activities during the busy weekend.

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The university was renamed Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU) in May 1987 in honor of its founding statesman and first Chancellor. The university had a student population of about 20,000 for the 2001 academic year and offers degrees in the following faculties;
Administration, Agriculture, Arts Education, Environmental Design and Management, Health Sciences and Schools of Medicine and Dentistry, Law, Science, Social Sciences, Pharmacy, Technology (Engineering).

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Great Ife is consistently the university with the most applicants in the JAMB (Joint Admission Matriculation Board) university entrance examination and is perhaps the most selective university in most courses. Ife is the University where Wole Soyinka (Nobel laureate in literature in 1986) was appointed and later promoted to full professorship in 1975. Members of Ife faculty hold doctorates and highest diplomas from virtually all the most venerated and hallowed universities of Europe, Britain, Canada and the United States. Further, alumni of Ife have earned top degrees and honors from the finest universities and organizations of the world.

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The university is located at Ile-Ife, (Osun State) in the southwestern region of Nigeria. This places the university 200km northwest of Lagos, the commercial nerve center of West Africa. The university is about 2 hours 15 minutes drive from Lagos, to which it is connected by dual carriage roads. International visitors arriving in Lagos by air can reach the University within 3 hours of leaving the Lagos airport.

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Ile-Ife, which literally means “Home of all men” is regarded in Yoruba mythology to be the site of divine creation. Ife is an ancient town, at least 1000 years old in its present location, with about 200,000 population. Most Ife people are students, artisans, farmers and traders. Ife is noted for its arts, carvings, and rituals to its pantheon of gods. Most importantly however, it is world famous for its naturalistic bronze heads and other metallurgical wonders. The artifact of Oduduwa’s head [the mythical progenitor of the Yoruba kingdoms] is included in the university’s coat of arms.

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