By Kingsley Okoye
The African University of Science and Technology (AUST), Abuja, on Monday began training of 200 entrepreneurs on Science and Technology Business Innovations in Nigeria and other African nations.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the training tagged: “2nd Innovation and Entrepreneurship BOOT CAMP for Innovators, Potential Startups and Existing Startups” which commenced on Aug. 30 will end on Sept. 10.
The training was organised by AUST in collaboration with Partnership for Skills in Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology (PASET) and African Development Bank (AfDB).
The training comprises mentorship, pitching, competition, fund raising, idea generations, business modeling and working.
In his opening remark, the President of AUST, Prof. Charles Chidume, said the participants which would participate physically and virtually were being trained at no cost to them.
He said the AfDB had supported activities of AUST via construction of structures and provision of fund for scholarship of students trained at institutions over the years.
According to him, AUST has been reputed for high level research in Science and Technology innovations in the last 10 years of its existence.
He said the university had been involved in training of Science and Technology driven researches in renewable energy, health, oil and gas and Information Technology to help improve the level of life of people in Africa.
Chidume said the AUST inspired BOOT camp programme was designed to get people to apply the high level research, training received at AUST to innovate and create wealth that would help people in Africa.
He expressed the belief that financial institutions would support the trainees with funding on present of bankable proposal to implement their innovations in the society.
Prof. Peter Onwualu, the Director, Academic Planning of AUST, also said the motive behind the programme was for students to leave the school environment with skills to create wealth and start their own companies.
Onwualu, said the trainees would learn technical, financial and business skills, adding that AUST has also made the programme open to members of the public to participate.
He said 70 of the participants had already registered for the physical training with others participating entrepreneurs joining virtually.
Onwaru urged agencies of government to support the entrepreneurs in the areas of fund generation, registration, certification of their companies among other institutional framework required for business formation.
Prof. Mohammed Dauda, the Director, Centre for Entrepreneurship Development, University of Maiduguri said the university was looking at the possibility of creating entrepreneurs, given the rate of unemployment and poverty.
He said there were many of the university students with innovative ideas, that could sell globally but do not know how to go about the process.
This, he said informed participation of some students from the University of Maiduguri in the AUST entrepreneurship programme.
Mohammad also said University of Maiduguri was on the verge of establishing a centre for innovation and product development to accelerate development of enterprises.
NAN also reports that highpoint of the event were goodwill messages from representatives of AFDB, National Directorate of Employment (NDE) and Vice-Chancellor of Nile University, Prof. Musa Nurj.
Others are Bank of Industry (BOI) Bank of Agriculture (BOA) among others.(NAN)