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AUN Community Honors Mandela A NEWSLETTER OF AMERICAN UNIVERSITY OF NIGERIA December 2013, Edition 68

Energy-efficient AUN Poised to Lead Nigerian Sustainability


he Nelson Mandela Memorial at the American University of Nigeria on December 10 did its best to awaken fond thoughts of the late, great leader that are shared by members of the University community. South African Renaldo Rheeder, AUN’s Director of Auxiliary Services, said that the kind words expressed about the deceased former president show that he was a good leader. “Mandela is being described as a person. He gave me a chance to dream of a world where apartheid didn’t exist. Without the outlawing of apartheid, I wouldn’t be able to pursue the career that I chose in Africa.” There was a sense of admiration and reverence at the ceremony that is not uncommon at AUN, a truly global Community with faculty, staff, and students from over 36 countries. President Margee Ensign, sent in words saying, “I am so proud of our AUN Community for turning out in good numbers to honor Nelson Mandela, a man celebrated globally as an icon of peace; and for our South African students for honoring their President and all of our AUN students who are preparing to be leaders in Nigeria.” President Ensign said Mandela’s ideals will continue to influence the world at large and as well as efforts by AUN and Adamawa

Peacemakers Initiative to achieve peace and reconciliation in the state. There was a sense of admiration and reverence at the ceremony that is not uncommon at AUN. But the ceremony’s candle-lit moment of silence is what let everyone present know that there is more to commemoration than getting dressed up and saying pleasant words. Perhaps the most central part of Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela’s life is that he was, and still is in many respects, an inspiration to people all around the world. Dean Byron Bullock. “You too can be a Nelson Mandela,” said Vice President Byron Bullock, Dean Student Affairs. “The fact that he died at 95 makes this enriching and endearing to each one of us. His death is a rite of passage; we’re not here to mourn, we’re here to celebrate. Mr. Mandela’s influence is unparalleled in modern-day leadership.” Prof. Charles Reith. “I wonder if – when he thought forward to the day of his passage – he speculated about these tributes around the world. If so, he would no doubt have wished that each of us here and in similar tributes would depart this Hall a better person, infused with brighter hopes, and committed to a life of greater service,” said Interim Provost Charles Reith.

Professor Bill Hansen said that Mandela was a symbol to the entire world’s unquenchable desire to be free. “He faced his enemy with courage and refused to give in. He understood that the past cannot rule the present and the future, and that the past had to be transcended.” Joseph Oladimeji. “Mandela makes me want to create change as a student leader at AUN,” said President of the Student Government Association, Joseph Oladimeji. South African student Siyabonga Nxumalo did his best to let the audience know that his generation will never forget the contributions Mandela made to South Africa. “Rest in peace, Madiba… you played your role and you’ll always be remembered.” Karin Rheeder, a member of AUN’s HR & Planning team, and a South African citizen, said that the former President’s life is the most successful social experiment that there has ever been. She was privileged to work with him several years ago in South Africa. “I felt like a real radical the first time I met him. Hugs were always first; he always wanted to hug everyone around him. There’s a Mandela in all of us.”



he moment that AUN realized that it could reduce energy costs by creating a sustainable campus, it created its own Office of Sustainability Initiatives. Since then, the University has been working to drastically reduce energy costs by monitoring electrical equipment and lighting, reviewing how much power the campus uses by observing usage patterns, initiating an energy-savings campaign, and educating the University community about the benefits of sustainable activities. The AUN Sustainability Month beg an in November. The comprehensive community outreach helped raise awareness throughout AUN by showing students, faculty, and staff members all the natural resources that are available on campus, and teaching them how they can complement the present efforts. Next year, Energy Consultant Michael Ameh will begin using a comprehensive e-diesel monitoring and control system. Mr. Ameh conducted an energy audit to help identify the University`s energy usage patterns, propose improvement opportunities, and establish priorities for implementation. “The plan is to reduce energy usage in areas that don’t require much lighting,” he said. “We also plan to

use energy-saving light bulbs, retrofit air conditioners with energy-saving sensors, reduce temperature set points of water heaters, and install electricity monitoring meters and building dashboards on all AUN buildings. People will be able to see how much energy is being used and wasted.” “We owe a lot to the Executive Director of Facilities & Capital Projects, Alex Cobo, who is a big part of our energy conservation efforts. Dr. Charles Reith has also been very supportive as well.” AUN will create sustainable, renewable energy that will allow it to be self-sufficient. The Office of Sustainability Initiatives is working on several other complementary projects that include its 3R (reduce, recycle, reuse) Campaign, which focuses on waste management techniques that will be used to control the way paper is consumed. Sustainability professionals at AUN are also making and testing Ecobriquettes that have the ability to eliminate the use of oil products and firewood. Another project, Yola EcoSentials (YES), a business venture, teaches community women how to turn recycled material into moneymaking products, and there are several nature and exercise trails around campus that


are being used to preserve the environment. The Sustainability Office is also getting students involved. The STARS Club (Student Teams Advancing Regional Sustainability) and students in Geology 101 are creating more awareness in the local community with their activities. President of STARS, Ibrahim Radda, has been very active with membership recruitment and organizing activities on and offcampus. “I have no doubt in my mind that with a continuous commitment to an energy-efficient AUN, the University will be on the right track toward cutting its energy spending by 10 percent,” said Coordinator of Sustainability Programs, Jennifer Che. As a 'Development University', AUN is doing everything in its power to create a sustainable environment in Yola. Sustainability is now seen to be one of the major factors behind development and at this critical point in time. Through energy conservation, a recycling plant, alternative energy sources, natural area preservation, and environmental education, AUN is working hard to be self-sufficient, and much of the progress made will be shared with the Yola community, the rest of Adamawa, and Nigeria.





Seminar: How to Save AUN ?60M Yearly on Energy


he Office of Sustainability and HR & Planning Dept. have organized a seminar to teach members of the AUN community to be more prudent in their energy use. The discussion on "Sustainability, what roles can I play?" taught easy and practical ways of contributing to the ongoing sustainability strategy at AUN. Michael Ameh, AUN energ y consultant, lamented the fact that people overlooked basic practices like turning off electrical appliances such as Water Heaters and ACs when not in use. "By turning off your AC for just an hour, you can help save more than

N60.00 ...these are simple things that don’t cost us anything.” He said conserving energy that is not needed can help to save 60 million naira for AUN every year. Jennifer Che drew attention to the uses of plastic bottles and papers. Instead of discarding these items as trash, she said the materials can be used to make recyclables like bags and ecobricks. She displayed samples of the products. They were beautiful. She urged the audience to desire a litter-free community. "We are at a privileged place because we have the facility to turn things time you drink your

Saving Energy with Jakes & Bugunsoft

water, your juice, don't discard the bottle; put in the bin, we will pick it up." Rotimi Ogundijo, a farm research hand at the Sustainability Office, spoke about the impact of greenhouse gas emission on the environment. He said the gases combined to form harmful air pollutants following rapid industrialization, as well as combustion from automobiles. He said the AUN sustainability program was looking at other environmentally friendly sources to power engines. Some of the alternatives mentioned included waste vegetable oil and feedstock. Interim Provost and founding Director of Sustainability Initiatives, Dr. Charles Reith, encouraged all to spread the word about the AUN sustainable goals, while the Deputy Director of HR Jasmine Jones urged the community to take action from the seminar as part of the AUN bid to go Eco-friendly.

Energy Conservation Takes Root


here is a growing culture of energy conservation among students at AUN after last week’s Sustainability and energy saving campaign. Several students were seen switching off unused appliances and lighting. All over campus there are stickers reminding students to switch off unused appliances. One of the students, Michelle Madu, said, "I will like to tell people about this awareness when I get beck home". The energy week featured various campaign events including a speech by interim Provost, Professor Charles Reith. Professor Reith spoke of the need for both staff and students to desist from wasting energy. A student Olalekan Adeyelu said, "I never knew I could help myself and people living around me by turning off my electrical appliances". Many other students were surprised how this really turned out to be useful for them. Students who stay off campus said it has elevated them. They are now models in their communities as they go around and tell people about energy conservation. They have taken the knowledge beyond AUN and now AUN has inspired the whole Yola community and beyond. Hopefully we can all do something to save energy. By Ibraheem Alabi


AVP Bamalli Serves Career Tips

AVP Nourah Bamalli


he importance of building a successful career in any organization, especially in AUN, was the focus of a discussion facilitated by the HR Dept at AUN Club on December 4. AVP HR and Planning, Mr. Nourah Bamalli who was speaking on "Managing My Career," said having personal fulfillment, work/life balance, goal achievements, and financial security were important in managing once career. He said a successful career starts

with an assessment of oneself in order to identify where one's interests and skills lie. "This is always what we fail to do," he noted. Next, he said individuals must do a career research to determine where they fit. "You have to brainstorm job titles, do an industry research, prioritize needs...don't ever assume that at one attempt, you'll get it." He identified networking, developing good interview skills, and the ability to negotiate a salary as some strategies to grasp for success in starting a career.

After achieving a particular job, he said it was important to manage one's career. Managing a career would involve building strong workplace relationship, and require professional development on the job, as well as idea of conflict resolution (where there are disputes), work/life balance, and succession planning. He said people hardly anticipate the end once they get into a job, but retirement plans were highly important. "People make a mistake; they stay in big houses where everything in that house is provided by the employer, they forget that retirement is just around the corner." To manage a career successfully, he advised staff to establish goals, track goals, and correct goals. Establishing one's goals in life is to align the organization's goal with personal goals. He said as people advance, so does their career management process help them to identify new paths. "Career is a lifelong is part of your life journey."

Literature Students stage Wole Soyinka's 'The Lion and the Jewel'


tudents of African Literature (ENG 221) on November 27 Washington Hall performed The Lion and The Jewel, one of the popular works of Nigerian playwright and Nobel laureate Wole Soyinka. Set in a typical African village, the play gives educated African audience a reason to connect with their culture.

modernization in which many have lost touch with traditional values. Oluwaseyi Owoniyi, a Junior majoring in Communications & Multimedia said, “It is a wakeup call to us Africans to accept our tradition.”

From the craftiness of Chief Baroka (the Lion in the story) to the arrogance of teacher Lakunle, who is obsessed with modernization, the play had something for every member of the audience, drawing out the theme of fast-paced

The course instructor, Dr. Agatha Ukata, who was impressed with the performance, said the purpose is to show case the artistic skills of

students with the hope that they continue to nurture it. She said the course introduces students to the works of major African writers including the oral tradition in African literature.

Why was the play such a huge success? He said it was part of their final The one-hour stage performance also grades and so they had offered the University community an to put in their best into after-work opportunity to unwind. it.




34 Security Officers Elevated Dr. Ensign observed that the officers were among the reasons Yola and particularly AUN, have been unaffected by the situation in the northeast. She praised them for their support of AUN activities. Aliyu Adewale, being decorated as Asst. Supervisor while President Margee Ensign (m) and Security Consultant Dr. Lionel Rawlins watch admiringly


hirty-four security officers were decorated with new ranks at a colorful ceremony held on November 16 in Washington Hall. The ceremony was witnessed by their family and friends, as well as AUN top management. Acting Chief Security Officer, Mrs. Olayide Babalola, who has moved up to Senior Supervisor rank, said the occasion called for celebration at the unit which has made substantial contribution to the AUN community. She said the promotion was timely, and would boost the morale of the beneficiaries and aid their career development. Mrs. Babalola thanked President Ensign for her commitment to providing security for the institution, and University Consultant, Dr. Lionel Rawlins, for his professional advice. She cautioned the officers in the ranks of Assistant Supervisor, Supervisor, and Senior Supervisor, against letting down their guards. "Higher institutions are not immune from ever alert to potential threats, and remember that your failure to be proactive, can result in the compromise of this very great institution." President Ensign, responding, commended the newly promoted officers. She said the occasion was not about them alone, but the entire community, and urged the officers to reflect on the importance of peace and security as key components of society.


Dr. Rawlins congratulated his new officers and reminded them that the occasion would not have been possible without the support of the President. He said it was the President, who insisted on having a well-educated and trained security outfit from the onset.

The officers were then presented with their new ranks after which they had photo sessions with the President and the senior management that included Vice President and Student Affairs Dean Byron Bullock, Assistant Vice President (HR & Planning) Nourah Bamalli, new Banner Director Gabriel Fuster, and Librarian Amed Demirhan. “I feel so happy and I am grateful to God for giving me a position like this in AUN," said Mrs. Ngurteino Bongi, a new Senior Supervisor, sharing her excitement. "This is my first promotion here at AUN. With this honor, I am just thankful," said Ibrahim Maigari, a new supervisor.

Senior Supervisors include Richard Asangari, Gwadi Theman, Calvin Eliphas, Ngurteino Bongi, Moses Oluyemi, Iliya Emmanuel, James Mamza, Joanna Jareil, Emmanuel Audu, and Acting CSO Olayide Babalola. The Supervisors are: Hadiza Ibigbami, Igweze Gabriel, Tipto Evans, Enu Mbia, Sibo Febel, Michael Goler, Laura Linus, Ibrahim Maigari, Adebayo Oluwole, Hunna Manasseh, and Ahmed Dodo. The Assistant Supervisors are: Freeman Adamu, Victor Ikokwu, Aliyu Adewale, E m m a nu e l E l i j a h , E m m a nu e l Augustine, Mercy Tahiru, Japhet Philemon, Isaac Oluchi, Lovelyn Ekeuda, Nafanda Samson, Ete Ezra,Sunday Peter, and Justice Talmon.

Alums, Students Get Opportunities


he AUN Alumni Association and the Office of Career Services has been busy searching for ways to help AUN students and graduates secure job and internship positions. Last week, they announced that positions are available with Yola Electricity Distribution Company. The Yola Electricity Distribution Company is looking for AUN alums who are

interested in human resources. If hired, they will be responsible for recruiting, training, and supervising new hires for the company. There was also an online seminar for alums interested in working with McKinsey & Company, one of America’s largest consulting firms. The Office also recently announced a job opening with L5Lab, a Lagos company. Global Site Plans, an online print and media development company, is

offering internships to students and alums with a flair for writing and blogging. They are also looking for assistant editors. This isn’t the first time the company has offered internships to AUN grads and students; five positions from the company were up for grabs in September. Students and alums can visit the Office of Career Services to enquire about jobs and internships.

Students Charged to Uphold AUN Codes On Monday, October 28, first-year students were reminded of the content of the University’s student code of conduct and the academic integrity code 2013. Director of Judicial Affairs, Mbursa Gwany, with the Interim Assistant Dean of Students Affairs, Reginald Braggs, facilitated the seminar. The Student Code of Conduct describes behaviors that are incompatible with the University’s values, and all students are expected to use it to guide their decisions both in and out of the classroom. Mr. Gwany listed

and explained them in depth. They include physical abuse/engagement, sexual misconduct, harassment or stalking, weapons, safety hazards, property offences, unauthorized entry or use, alcohol/drugs/substance abuse as well as providing false information. He also listed the various remedial or reformative sanctions against the infractions, including asking defaulters to write an apology letter, warning, disciplinary measure, probation, restitution, reallocation or removal from university housing, suspension,

expulsion or revocation of degrees. He added that the sanction could sometimes include compulsory community service. Braggs told the students that one way they can avoid falling into trouble is to be engaged in approved activities. He said engaging in club activities are wholesome and worthwhile. He also encouraged them to read the codes as they also contains their rights as students should they find themselves in trouble.

Lecture Highlights Wealth-creating Potential of Microbes


Dr. Rawlins and Ngurteino Bongi, newly promoted Senior Supervisor,

ultibillion business fortunes exist for entrepreneurs who are interested in exploiting microbes, said guest lecturer, Professor Chikezie I. Owuama, from Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola, at AUN's first Academic Engagement Lecture Series on Tuesday, October 29. He expounded on some of these opportunities in his paper "Economic Business of Microorganisms in Our Lives: A Gold Mine Unlimited." Professor Owuama observed that fungi, which belong to a large group of eukaryotic microorganisms, are abundant worldwide. He said that they are useful, renewable resources that are used to create wealth for developing economies like Nigeria. Filamentous fungi and yeasts can be used to produce vitamins, antibiotics, and steroids. Also, in the area of food, he said these microorganisms can aid in food fermentation and ethanol

production for wine. Other potential sectors that can benefit from fungi include the environment (bio pesticides), energy (biogas), and

agriculture (legume-rhizobia). In Nigeria, he observed, there are few businesses associated with microorganisms. Those that do exist are active in beer production, spirits, bread, wine, and yoghurt markets. The speaker urged young entrepreneurs to venture into new areas, which, he said, are still untapped. These areas include

antibiotics, enzymes, insulin, and cheese. He lamented the continuous importation of substances that could be developed locally, and urged those interested to exploit opportunities in the area by building partnerships with research institutions. These institutions, he added, have the intellectual capacity to develop fungi on a commercially viable level. Professor Owuama also urged government to lend support to such industries, since the intellectual capacity needed is available. "These ideas are relatively easy to incor porate, particularly if the government starts paying more attention to the academics within the system, and recognize there potential to actually develop these things...All the government has to do is to have faith in our ability to carry out this research save money for the country. He said that millions of naira is spent every year importing enzymes when we have organisms here that we can use.





By Zamiyat Abubakar

An Evening with Actress Ireti Doyle


reti Doyle is a Nigerian entertainer popularly known as Sheila in the popular TV series, Tinsel. She is so determined and she would never let go of anything she sees as an opportunity. That is what she told students at AUN when she stormed the campus last week. She said her first TV appearance was as a minor character when she was in her third year at University. When she came to AUN, everyone was expecting her to talk about Nollywood; rather she talked about herself in Nollywood. Well, that way, she avoided controversy as there are as many views of Nollywood as there are students. Moreover everyone found her personal story quite inspiring. Ireti set out in her mind to be the best actress Nigeria has ever had when she started her career 18 years ago. She would always say to people around her "I am not saying I am the best but show me who is better". Being a taker of every advantage, she would go for every audition that she knew of, and compete with people from everywhere to prove her talent. What struck me most is her humility. This is an attribute

which she said has taken her to where she is today. After pursuing the star actress trend for a long time and it almost did not work, she first ended up as a "lonely production assistant" and later, she decided to learn acting from behind the scene from the scratch. She did not give up on her dream and would allow temporary difficulties to mislead her. She gradually started acting minor roles and before she knew it, she became the star we all know today. Now, it is a world away from when she started. Money comes in from every angle ranging from MCing at presidential events to production. Her secret? Turning what people would see as disadvantages into opportunities. She never underrates a role. "Every individual is created with more than one talent, just discover them" she said. Ireti today is what we know as a Tripple Threat. She is a broadcaster who can act and produce. She started from moving cables around at studios to 3 nominations and best actress award and 10 films. By Ibraheem Alabi

Professors Jacob Jacob and Abdul Mousa. Upon arrival, they were split into two groups, and guided by Gotel staff; the groups toured the radio and television sections alternatively. Students were impressed with Gotel’s state-of-the-art equipment and facilities.


tudents of Communications and Multimedia Design have been challenged to change Africa with communication. During a facility visit to Gotel Communications on November 21, the Chief Operating Officer of Gotel, Gary Alphonso, said the students have the responsibility of changing the world’s negative perception of Africa by leveraging the technological advancements in the information age.

He said with today’s information and communication technologies anyone can do great things. Mr Alphonso also emphasized the importance of passion and dedication and enjoined the students to be committed to improving their story-telling skills. The trip included students from CMD 150 (Introduction to Media Studies), CMD 151 (Introduction to Media in Africa), and CMD 230 (Introduction to Media Production) classes, as well as

Acting as a guide for the tour of TV Gotel, BBC News Consultant and renowned journalist, Fidelis Mbah, spoke of the importance of gathering experience by doing field work. He also told the students of internship opportunities available at Gotel, and encouraged them to apply as it would help them be better employees upon graduation. Mr. Mbah joined the Gotel team in October and was hired to use his expertise to help take Gotel to the next level. The students visited with the Head of News and Current Affairs, Mr. Sanda Gani Fred, who gave them an idea of what reporting news for the various kinds of media entailed. He also told the students about what makes news, and how to find news in what others might see as inconsequential. The students said they were enriched by the knowledge gained from the visit.

AUN Student Serves as Model UN Chief of Staff


bubakar Sadiq Alhassan a firstyear student in the School of Business & Entrepreneurship, recently served as Chief of Staff at the Nigerian International Secondary School Model United Nations (NISSMUN 2013) Conference in Abuja. Mr. Abubakar was selected to be Chief of Staff for this year’s conference while still in high school. He served as a director at the conference in 2012. “Serving as Chief of Staff was an important leadership opportunity in my life… I did not want to miss it,” he said. “I am happy that I received AUN’s support. The University made this a reality for me.” This was third time Mr. Abubakar served as a leader at the MUN Conference. In 2011, he was a delegate


representing Brazil and the Committee them to the proper authorities, and of Special Youth Interaction, and in checking the unrestrained behavior of 2012 he was Director of the Human principal officers and delegates at the Rights Council (HRC). conference. The NISSMUN Conference is in its ninth year. This year’s theme was “Protecting Our Natural Resources for Today and Future Generations.” NISSMUN is known as an initiative that is committed to helping young people in Africa become global citizens. It creates opportunities for young boys and girls to practice, test, and develop their leadership and diplomacy skills. Mr. Abubakar’s duties included receiving dignitaries and special guests of honor, resolving complaints from delegates, Abubakar Al Hassan escorts Senator Ellis Esuene to accompanying staff and referring the event venue


Insideaun dec13  

Monthly Newsletter of the American University of Nigeria, Yola.