After toiling comes the nectarous fruit of hard work. The 1st of December 2023 marked a memorable day for the graduating class of 2023 as the culmination of their academic journey unfolded in a grand convocation ceremony, signifying their accomplishments and paving the way for new beginnings. The halls of the Lagos Business School resonated with the undeniable excitement of families, graduates (of the various undergraduate programmes offered by the university) and the promise of a future carved by dedication and hardwork.
The ceremony commenced with a solemn procession, led by the graduating class, esteemed faculty members, council procession comprised of dignitaries and members of the governing council of invited universities and lastly the university’s Chancellors’ procession comprised of the members of the university’s governing council. The echoes of applause cascaded through the auditorium as the graduates filed in, a testament to their unwavering commitment to knowledge and excellence.
Professor Enase Okonedo, Vice-Chancellor, addressed the gathered congregation with a welcoming note. Emphasising the significance of the day, she spoke passionately about the graduates’ resilience in navigating challenges throughout their 4-years stay and the profound impact they would inevitably leave wherever they find themselves. She also used the opportunity to highlight a few of the school’s latest accomplishments.
Pro-Chancellor of the university, Mr. Henry Ajumogobia, SAN, OFR delivered an inspiring keynote address that resonated deeply with the audience. His words echoing encouragement and applauding praises to the graduands, most of whom experienced the full breadth of the COVID-19 pandemic during their PAU studies. He also cautioned them concerning the ever changing landscape of the digital world especially with the emergence of artificial intelligence. He admonished them to embrace artificial intelligence but also to be wary of the moral and ethical implications concerning its use.
Each graduand, upon hearing their name, ascended the stage with a mix of emotions – pride, nostalgia, and a touch of apprehension for the journey ahead. As they were awarded their respective degrees, a symphony of cheers erupted, celebrating not just individual accomplishments but the collective triumph of knowledge and perseverance.
The highlight of the convocation was, undoubtedly, Samson Adams feat. He is the esteemed recipient of the Fabian Ajogwu Scholarship. Though from a humble background, Samson rose to become the overall best Graduating Student of Pan-Atlantic University (PAU) in 2023, and the distinction of being the top student in Economics with a CGPA of 4.95 (First Class). Samson exemplified the essence of the scholarship by excelling further, securing accolades for the best student in Economics and the distinguished leadership award. Notably, he was also selected as the valedictorian. During his address, Samson acknowledged the profound truth that every experience contributes to our resilience and growth. Professor Fabian Ajogwu could not contain his joy as he was delighted to have been invited to present Samson with his many well-deserved awards and prizes.
Amidst the joyous atmosphere, several other outstanding achievers were also honoured with awards and accolades for their exceptional contributions to academia, leadership and entrepreneurship. Their stories served as beacons of inspiration, underscoring the transformative power of passion, thirst for learning, teachability, determination and dedication.
Transcending mere ceremony, the convocation ceremony served as a poignant reminder for graduates of the uncharted paths that lay ahead. It represented not just an end but a new beginning to embrace forthcoming challenges and opportunities. As the day concluded, graduates emerged into the world not just with degrees, but with a wealth of knowledge and a resolute determination to effect change.
The 1st of December 2023, will forever memorialise the resilience and scholarly excellence of the graduating class of 2023, marking not just the end of an academic phase, but the genesis of a new journey where each graduate embarks to make an indelible mark on the world.
Full-length video of the 2023 Convocation ceremony is available on the Pan-Atlantic University YouTube channel.