The Executive Secretary/CEO, National Institute for Cultural Orientation (NICO), Assoc. Prof. Barclays Foubiri Ayakoroma, has said that the idea of having a viable project defence for students was to ensure that such students actually did their project works and did not ‘contract’ them out.

The NICO Boss, who made this known in his opening remarks at the 2015/2016 Academic Session project defence of students of the Post Graduate Diploma in Cultural Administration (PGDCA) programme of NICO Training School, Abuja Study Centre, held at NICO Headquarters, Abuja on Monday, 19th and Tuesday, 20th December, 2016, also stressed the importance of having the students’ project work titles displayed on power point presentation through the use of a projector as it gives room for standard presentations, clarity and detailed correction of the titles of the project works.

Prof. Ayakoroma however expressed reservations on the delay in submitting the project titles which just got to him in the morning of the day of the defence, pointed out that it was expected that students should be able to do what they have been taught in Research Methodology, adding: “The reason for this exercise is to examine what the students have done, how they have done it, and whether they conform with the standards they have been taught.”

He reiterated that currently, student’s works in most universities were being subjected to plagiarism test and that if any student’s project has more than 15% plagiarism, such a student will not be allowed to carry out the project defence, adding that, the essence of the plagiarism test was to ensure that students do not copy just from the internet or other published works with acknowledging.

To further ensure standard project works, Prof. Ayakoroma, who also teaches Advanced Research Methodology, advised project supervisors to always encourage their students to read extensively, and properly document such sources, bearing in mind that both students and their supervisors are being examined during projects defence; and further instructed the Coordinator, NICO Training School, Abuja Study Centre, Dr. (Mrs.) Regina Onuoha, to get a specimen Certification Page for the students for purposes of uniformity.

The Executive Secretary commended the 2015/2016 set of students for being exemplary and advised them to ensure that they promoted what they have learnt, stressing that those from other organizations were now NICO Culture Ambassadors that should market the programme because the more external candidates attended the programme, the better the Culture Sector.

On a final note, Ayakoroma enjoined the academic staff of the Training School to liaise with the students to ensure that all the corrections were meticulously effected before the final printing and binding, adding that the students should get the specimen certification page from the Coordinator.

All the students examined, especially those on the second day, expressed their appreciation to the Management and Staff of the Institute and the Training School, for the knowledge gained in the course of the programme.

The Coordinator of the Abuja Study Centre, Dr. (Mrs.) Regina Onuoha, also appreciated the Executive Secretary, all the Directors and staffers of the Abuja Study Centre of the Training School, for their support, averring that the Executive Secretary had taken the Institute to an enviable position as a result of the programme, which has been very fruitful and rewarding, as students who attend have a deep knowledge of Cultural Administration.

Sandra O. Kingsley-Omogiade

NICO Training School

Abuja Study Centre