In Nigeria, Ladoke Akintola University of Technology has sturbornly remained relevant when it comes to impacting technical education to undergraduates. Despite the so many troubles that she has faced, she is today, still the best state University in the country. A feat that is lofty – and judiciously held as such in the Nigeria academia climate. But this is not what her Wikipedia page has to say. Not counting the school mail, there is little or no way to support the several lofty claims of the institution. A very harsh let down. It is even worst that this communication bridge is constructed between the true image of a school of technology and the world at an age when the world has been made a virtual village by advancement in information technology.
The role of social media in the build of negative image for the school cannot be overemphasized. Having had to be shut down for a long stretch of time due to Labour Actions, the social media was eager to focus its lens on the school. Now while trying to re-establish itself, the same media should be employed to change the narrative for good.
For instance, LAUTECH has been ranked best state University in the country two consecutive times after the long strike, But this cannot be found on her Wikipedia page nor would you find her latest affiliations with foreign universities there. These and many other good things about the institution are missing on the school’s page on Wikipedia.
If Google was the central room on the internet today, Wikipedia would be one of its power houses. And a very crucial power house at that.
It is, and not the school’s website the first point of call for anyone who wants to get information about the institution. Even if the school’s website was visited, the visitor might find it uninteresting to navigate because they are not there for any serious search. They are either there to verify claims or make some quick findings. The school’s website does not provide any of these like a Wikipedia page would.
Other recents about LAUTECH not found on her Wikipedia page is the establishment of the Faculty of Food and Consumer Science. Now, let us settle with the excuse that it is still a new faculty that is yet to kick-start, what about Marketing department that was left out of the list of departments in Management Sciences? And the lack of adequate information on her postgraduate programme, and other affiliated programmes which includes the newly inaugurated Jupeb and IJMB programmes or the lack of a pictorial representation of the institution on the page! It bothers on disregard to see that this information is not yet on the institutions’ page on Wikipedia.
Not left out on the outdatedness of the page is the statistics of the staff and students of the institution. Is the number of students over 30,000 as claimed by several unverifiable sources or is it 20,000 and 25,000 as inconsistently claimed by her Wikipedia page?
Though students of the institution are obviously making update on the page every now and then as shown by the last two update done by one Adeniyi Akintunde Oyegbile and Tolly4Boll, it is high time the school management is involved in this social media revitalization of the school image, as they are in better position to provide veritable facts about the institution.
There should be no institution that utilises the Internet better than that which has dedicated herself to advancement in technology. School mails and Websites are not enough places to Reach out to people. There should be a sort of self integration by the institution into the heart of the internet.
A commitment to personally be involved in the process of changing the narrative. Not only on Wikipedia but on any platform provided by the internet for self expression. Else, LAUTECH will continue to be that school that was the best state university in Nigeria in 2003-2004 academic session.