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Nigeria Becomes an Important Member of GLOBE in Africa

Governor of Ondo State, His Excellency Dr. Olusegun Agagu, at the opening ceremony.

Nigeria has taken a giant step forward with implementing GLOBE and joining the GLOBE Africa community! During 22-25 August 2006, over 80 participants attended the first GLOBE Nigeria Trainer Workshop. In addition to teachers and administrators from over 30 schools, representatives from Federal and State Governments, Nigerian Meteorological Service, World Meteorological Organization, universities, and a United Nations organization called the African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education (ARCSSTE-E) participated in the event. The international training team consisted of Dr. Awodugba Ayodeji and Dr. John Arubayi from Nigeria, Mr. George Nditifon from Cameroon, Mr. Mark Brettenny from South Africa, Dr. Robert Ford from Texas (USA), and Mr. Tom Berlin and Mr. Todd Ensign from West Virginia (USA). The GLOBE Program extends congratulations to Dr. Ayodeji, Dr. Arubayi, and Mr. Brettenny who received their GLOBE Master Trainer certification at the completion of the workshop.

The workshop was held at Sunshine e-Technology Center in Akure, Ondo State. Through the generosity of the Governor of Ondo State, His Excellency Dr. Olusegun Agagu, and through the hard work of many people, in particular, Professor Raifu Durodoye, this workshop has set the stage for sustained educational reform in Nigeria, building school collaborations among countries in Africa and the United States, and strengthening learning communities through the involvement of the Nigerian Meteorological Service, universities, and ARCSSTE-E. As Mr. Ensign said, "It is an honor to be a part of this initiative to bring GLOBE to Nigerian schools. I am working to set up opportunities to share and compare student data between Nigerian and West Virginian schools and to bring a West Virginian teacher to Nigeria to learn more about their local environment, meet the teachers, and develop international student research projects."

GLOBE fits in well with the vision of Governor Agagu to provide significant science, math, and technology opportunities to schools and the general public. This workshop inaugurated the Sunshine e-Technology Center and will be used for future professional development opportunities for GLOBE schools and the general public. As well, the Governor provided extensive field and laboratory equipment for 34 schools and has appropriated funding to provide equipment for all secondary schools in Ondo State.

Mr. Brettenny, GLOBE Country Coordinator in South Africa and the Alternative to the Chair of the GLOBE Africa Regional Consortium, invited all participants and Governor Agagu, as well as all schools throughout Africa, to attend the upcoming GLOBE Learning Expedition (GLE) in South Africa in February 2008. The GLE is an international student science conference where students from around the world present their research, attend field, art and cultural activities, and have the opportunity to interact with other students and scientists. Nigeria now has the challenge to have a strong presence at the GLE!

GLOBE Nigeria facilitator, Professor Raifu Durodoye, is a Professor of Mathematics at North Lake College in Texas, USA. He is originally from Osun State in Nigeria and is working with officials there to hold a similar workshop in Osun State. Professor Durodoye described the GLOBE workshop as the first of its kind in Nigeria, saying, "With this workshop, Ondo State has developed a roadmap for the creation of a future generation of scientists by providing access and opportunity in mathematics, science and technology, and a sustained professional development program for teachers." This roadmap will be implemented in the next workshop in Osun State! 

18 October 2006