Lynn University president tours Nigeria’s higher education institutions

Tour part of school's continuing exploration of international opportunities
Lynn University president tours Nigeria’s higher education institutions President Kevin M. Ross visits the Nassarawa State University

Published Aug. 29, 2011

Earlier this summer, Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross toured Nigeria for four days to visit six of Nigeria’s higher education institutions and representatives of its university system to see if opportunities for partnerships exist.

The trip came about because Lynn already has connections with Nigeria. Ross and his father, Donald Ross, who is president emeritus of Lynn, were guests of Alhaji Muhammadu Indimi, the owner of Nigeria’s oil and gas company, Oriental Energy Resources Limited. Indimi has sent four of his children (three daughters and one son) to Lynn over the years, and two more of his daughters will be attending Lynn in the fall.

"We wanted to see their various types of higher education institutions, beautiful country and if any connections could be made. We were met with unbelievable graciousness and hospitality and a spirit of working together,” Ross said.

The tour took Ross and others to a variety of far-flung locations—from the capital city to sparsely populated rural desert areas—to see examples of the country’s schools. They visited the University of Abuja (the capital city), Baze University, the African University for Science & Technology, the Nassarawa State University, Bingham University and American University Nigeria. During each visit, they met the schools’ administration, faculty and staff and toured the campus and facilities.

An exchange partnership with a Nigerian school would expand opportunities for their students to study at Lynn University while also increasing academic and cultural exchanges between Lynn and institutions from the African nation.

During the tour they also took time out to have dinner at Ameena Indimi Dalhatu’s house. She earned both an undergraduate degree (in 1998) and her M.B.A (in 2000) from Lynn. They dined with her and her two sisters who also graduated from Lynn.

“Their faces lit up when we walked in,” Ross said. “They said they never thought that within 100 years they would see us in their homes.”

The trip left Ross with a distinct impression that Nigeria (the most populous country in Africa with a strong oil and gas industry) was a country that understands the important role of education.

"There are a wide variety of higher education opportunities in Nigeria,” Ross said. “Despite their differences, all the people and students we visited shared one important trait—a strong desire for learning.”

More on Ross:

Since he became president of Lynn University in July 2006, Kevin Ross has overseen the launch of the long-range Lynn 2020 strategic plan, the funding and construction of new campus facilities, including the state-of-the-art Keith C. and Elaine Johnson Wold Performing Arts Center and helped guide the school through the Haiti crisis in 2010. He is currently serving on the Greater Boca Raton Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and is involved with several other local community organizations.

As president of a local educational institution, Ross can speak to a variety of issues both on a national and local level. He has an in-depth knowledge of higher education industry trends and issues and can speak to the media about business and community developments in South Florida and Palm Beach County. He is also a nationally recognized speaker on issues related to student service and the importance of teaching global citizenship to the next generation.

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