The Chairman, Tony Elumelu Foundation, Mr. Tony Elumelu has advised students to lead lives that will portray them as responsible Nigerian citizens.
Elumelu said this at the 15th annual lecture and prize- giving day of Bridge House College, Ikoyi, Lagos recently.
Congratulating the graduates, the economist and entrepreneur said the event marked the beginning of a new phase in their lives, adding that the foundation they lay would define who they become in future.
Elumelu, who commended the Executive Director of the college, Mrs. Foluke Abdulrazak for channelling her passion and commitment in equipping future leaders, said great leaders would emerge from among them. He also assured intending entrepreneurs among the graduates that his foundation is ready to assist them.
The Chairman of the event and founder, Entrepreneur-in-Residence, Ausso Leadership Academy, Austin Okere, while speaking on the theme ‘Being Digitally Intelligent in the Corporate World’ said for the country to see the desired change it craves for, citizens must be committed to writing a new chapter for the Nigerian society through responsible citizenship.
Regretting that the country has not attained its full potential because of lack of character on the part of the people, Okere urged the graduates to choose character over compromise. “When we choose character over compromise, we become stronger.”
While stating that success stands on a tripod of character, competence and commitment, he said: “It is good character that helps a leader to deal with realities of life. So to see the desired change, we have to be good citizens of our dear country by turning a new page and re-writing a new chapter for our society.”
Also speaking, the Chairman of First Bank Plc, Ibukun Awosika, who was the guest speaker, urged the graduates to positively use digital technologies, while admonishing them not to allow pressure from people’s feelings to decide their future.
“The future is digital and we have to adjust to the new world. Meanwhile, be careful on how you use technology tools that are available to you because it will leave a trail.
“As you step into a different level, remember that you will be held more accountable for the things you do. Learn to use technology positively; think of doing things in a new way. Don’t be afraid to start alone.”
Awosika also urged them to imbibe good character, discipline, dedication, as well as to “pay attention to the kind of person you are. Be curious because curiosity will compel you to explore more. Try to work with others to find solutions. Do things that give you joy, things you are passionate about.”
Charging the graduands on the task ahead, the Principal, Ayoola Akinyeye said: “I consider myself blessed among my peers to have had over 150 teenagers, souls, and characters that I have had occasion to impact and call my students.”
Akinyeye, who expressed joy to have led the students by respect, hoping to have created an example of respect, tolerance, excellence and honour, said she was delighted to have given the graduates roots and wings. “Having strong roots imply that you have spent time exploring who you are in a safe, loving and non-judgmental place. It implies a deep understanding of family and family values. At Bridge House College, we want you to soar over obstacles and glide to the heights of the best you can be.”
Atte Dauebi Jesse, who emerged the best graduating student, also recorded an outstanding performance in the Cambridge Accelerated A-Level Programme, and is already admitted to study Mechanical Engineering at the University of Bristol.