The Air Force Institute of Technology (AFIT) Kaduna, on which an enabling law was recently assented to by President Mohammadu Buhari, is to begin academic programmes at degree level by September 2018, according to the Chief of Air Staff (CAS) Air Marshal Sadique Abubakar.
Abubakar gave the hint of the programme commencement when he paid a courtesy visit to the National University Commission (NUC), on Friday in Abuja.
The first degree programmes to be offered by the Institute include Aerospace Engineering, Mechatronics Engineering, Automotive Engineering among others.
“The institute will also offer Masters Degree programmes in Aerospace Vehicle Design with Airframe, Power Plant and Avionics Options, in addition to other programmes,” he said.
The CAS expressed optimism that AFIT had what it takes to meet the requirements for the desired upgrading and that the NAF would readily address any gaps that might be discovered by NUC officials, during inspection visits, to ensure the takeoff of the degree programmes by September 2018.
He said AFIT could currently boast of over 20 staff with doctorate degrees in aerospace engineering and related fields while over 40 staff had Masters Degrees in various fields.
Besides, he said the Cranfield University of United Kingdom, with which AFIT has several years of relationship, had expressed its readiness to support AFIT in its quest to become a degree-awarding body.
Receiving the CAS, the Executive Secretary of NUC, Prof. Abubakar Rasheed, commended NAF for its efforts that saw to the speedy passage and assent of the law establishing AFIT.
He equally lauded the CAS for his vision, doggedness and commitment to the upgrading of AFIT to a degree-awarding institution.
Rasheed acknowledged that there was indeed the need for a specialized university that is geared towards solving some of the peculiar technological challenges of the NAF.
He added that AFIT would be expected to offer degree courses in fields such as computer security and cyber warfare in addition to other related conventional programmes towards enabling the country to develop those skills required for survival in the 21st Century.
The NUC boss further stated that the commission was aware of the strides already being made by AFIT in Research and Development as well as its successful collaborations with tertiary institutions within and outside the country.
In addition, he stated that the Commission was aware that AFIT admits and trains a sizeable number of civilian students.
He, therefore, expressed the willingness of NUC to closely work with the NAF to ensure that AFIT meets the criteria for upgrading to a degree-awarding institution.
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