UNIMED committed to inclusive education
By Sade Adewale, Ondo
The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Medical Sciences, Prof. Adesegun Fatusi said that the university has set the goal of improving access to education for young people living with disabilities and preparing the school’s graduates to be disability-friendly in personal and professional engagements.
Fatusi stated this in an interview with The Hope in Ondo, saying one of the new agenda as a university is to be the model Tertiary institution for disability-inclusive education in Nigeria and West Africa.
He noted that the institution recently established the Office of Disability Affairs and Services (ODAS), and its mandate includes ensuring equitable access to educational opportunities irrespective of disability status.
He further said that ODAS would be involved in developing teaching and learning resources and providing practical support to students with disabilities to optimise their educational experience.
He added that ODAS will drive advocacy and institutional actions to make the curricula more disability friendly, including compulsory classes in Nigerian sign language for relevant groups of students.
According to him, the office will also monitor the implementation of disability-related agenda across all the units, training programmes, platforms, and environment.
The VC said the office would engage in community outreach, education, and research on disabilities, noting that the university has continued to maintain a strong focus on community development and community services.
His words: “We are currently in discussions with Gallaudet University, Washington DC, USA, as part of the efforts to achieve our disability-inclusive goal.
“Our discussions with Gallaudet University also offer exciting opportunities for strengthening our audiology degree programme as well as our proposed BSc in speech-language therapy and postgraduate training in clinical mental health counselling”, the VC noted.
Fatusi said that the government needs to give special attention and intervention funds to accelerate UNIMED’s development and to help ensure that UNIMED continues to be a TETFund beneficiary institution.