Ten Nigerian Students Add to Florida Techs International Mix

MELBOURNE, FLA.—Capt. Muhammad B. Jibrin has fond memories of his time spent at Florida Tech, which culminated in a 1984 aeronautical science bachelor’s degree. The resident of Nigeria, now an honorable commissioner, Ministry of Works and Transport, for the west African country, was so pleased he sent his daughter Halima to Florida Tech this summer, accompanied by seven more Nigerian aviation students. Two had already begun classes in the spring. All want to learn to fly.

“They are excellent students, very motivated. I wish all our students were so diligent,” said Paul Davis, College of Aeronautics (COA) faculty member.

Jibrin hasn’t finished forging bonds between his country and Florida Tech. This week he returned to campus, bringing with him the governor of the Bauchi State of Nigeria, Isa Yuguda, and eight other government dignitaries. Yuguda spoke to the Nigerian students, and Florida Tech administrators and faculty from the College of Aeronautics and College of Science about his desires for future academic exchanges.

The governor expressed hope that Florida Tech would accept more students and that the university would send faculty members to Nigeria to teach.

He also discussed sending his country’s students to Florida Tech for bachelor’s and master’s degrees in the College of Science, especially in science and mathematics education.

Also attending the meeting from Florida Tech were Gordon Nelson, dean of the College of Science; Debra Blenis, director of teacher education, Department of Science and Mathematics Education; Ken Stackpoole, senior vice president for advancement; Beverly Sanders, senior director of development; and several more COA faculty members.

Florida Tech’s international population includes students from more than 100 countries.

PHOTO: Florida Tech students from Nigeria, from left: Abdurrahman Yusuf, Ibrahim Miya, Bilal Yakubu, Ibrahim Dodoji, Umar Gwallameji, Yahaya Abubakar, Halima Jibrin, Hannatu Dogo and Abdullahi Shitu. Not pictured is Mustapha Bawa.

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