As part of activities marking the official retirement from active service, a Valedictory Lecture was held in honour of Professor Joseph Olusola Akinyede.
Guests at the lecture, which is 5th in the series of Valedictory Lectures in Federal University of Technology, Akure included the Vice Chancellor, FUTA; Principal Officers of the University, Officials of the Geoinformation Society of Nigeria; Members of the African Association of Remote Sensing of the Environment (AARSE); Family and Friends, amongst others.
In his lecture, the University Don, who has put in forty one (41) years in service cutting across various institutions, government agencies and the academia, recounted how he started his professional journey, from the late B.Sc admission to study Geology at the University of Ibadan, then to Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria where he got a Master degree in Applied Geochemistry/Geochemical exploration.
Professor Akinyede gave a brief of how he cut his teeth at the Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute (NBRRI) for 11 years. He narrated how this experience aroused his interest in the study of Space Science and Remote Sensing in particular.
Ovation for Prof Akinyede by principal officers of FUTA
Well wishers and dignitaries at the end of the Valedictory Lecture
His academic pursue took him to the prestigious International Institute for Geoinformation Science and Earth Observation (ITC), now Faculty ITC, University of Twente, the Netherlands where he bagged and became the first ever PhD graduate.
The lecture which was delivered with the audience held spell-bound gave a review of his working experience across a spectrum of institutions including the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA), where he worked as a Director for 13 years and the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA), where he was a Professor for 8 years, with 5 years as Director, Centre for Space Research and Applications (CESRA). Prior ro that, Prof Akinyede served as Director/Chief Executive, African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education-English, Ile Ife from 2009 to 2014.
ARCSSTEE's delegation at the event
Celebrant with the Vice Chancellor, Federal University of Technology, Akure, (FUTA),
In the crux of the lecture, Professor Akinyede gave an introduction to the composition of the Earth dynamic environment. He gave an explanation of each of the spheres of the Earth: Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, Biosphere and Lithosphere.
He gave an history of the Space race starting with the launch of the first satellite, SPUTNIK-1 into Space by the Soviet Union (USSR) on 4th October, 1957, closely followed by the launch of Explorer-1 satellite by the United States of America (USA).
He gave a summary of the Nigeria’s Space Policy and events leading to the establishment of the National Space Research and Development Agency (NASRDA) and its 6 activity Centres.
The lecture captured the launch of the Earth Observation Satellites (NigeriaSats-1, 2 and X); the need for critical Space-enabled ICT (launch of NigComSat-IR); need for reliable and sufficient geoinformation for planning and decision-making and meeting global needs for sustainable development.
The valedictory lecture has been detailed in book form and is available in Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA).
Professor also gave account of his contributions as the head of individual agencies and department. He used the opportunity to acknowledge the contribution of individuals cutting across all spheres of life.
African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology- Education sent a high-powered delegation to grace the occassion. and presented a gift in appreciation of the contributions of Professor Akinyede to its growth and development.