The Provost of Alvan Ikoku Federal College of Education, Owerri, Dr. Blessing Ijioma has been conferred with the Fellowship of the Astronomical Society of Nigeria (ASN).
The ceremony which took place recently at the Centre for Energy Research and Development at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka was in recognition of the Provost’s efforts and contributions towards the growth and development of space science in Nigeria.
In her response after receiving the Fellowship, the Provost thanked the President and members of the Society for finding her worthy of the award. She stated that as the head of the foremost College of Education in Nigeria her dream was to produce scientifically and technologically efficient teachers that would go to the secondary and primary schools to boost interest of our students in science and technology because “no nation can grow economically and socially without a solid technological base.” She posited that the award will serve as a veritable tonic to her for greater efforts and promised the Society of her continued support and encouragement towards its activities.
Earlier in his conferment speech, the President of the Astronomical Society of Nigeria (ASN), Professor Augustine Ubachukwu who is also the Dean, School of Post-Graduate Studies of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka said the Society was impressed with the training of Basic Space Science teachers in secondary schools organised by the College in addition to hosting the biggest Basic Space Science workshop in the country where teachers were exposed to various space science theories and methodologies and skywatching sessions.
The College, under Dr. Blessing Ijioma, has become a major hub for Basic Space Science and this has led to the publication of a text for use in schools which has gone a long way in motivating teachers and students to develop keen interest in space science technology.
The award ceremony coincided with the 5th National Conference of the ASN and witnessed the presence of eminent scientists in Physics and Astronomy in Nigeria including Professor Emeritus P.N Okeke, the President of the African Astronomical Society.