ON THE 14TH JULY, 2011


The Vice Chancellor,

Deputy Vice Chancellor,

The Provosts,

The Professors,



The founder’s dinner is a popular event in ABUAD designed to give opportunity for students, teachers and parents to freely interrelate and exchange ideas. At each dinner, I usually deliver a short address. I am indeed delighted to observe that my advice and suggestions in my addresses have been yielding satisfactory results. The positive remarks by visitors to this institution about the dressing, manner, respect and cleanliness make me proud of our students who are gradually becoming budding agents of change.

In this regard, I identify and pay special tribute to Gbelekale Esq and Miss Opasina who in separate interviews with the Sun Newspaper acknowledged the benefits of proper time utilization.

Gbelekale said:

“There was a particular address the founder gave on time management in which he taught us how time was essential to an individual”

Opasina said:

“That talk changed the way I manage my time and it has really helped me a lot”.

Ladies and gentlemen, education is derived from three sources; (a) from personal experience, (b) from what one reads and (c) from what one hears. An address such as this constitutes one way of acquiring knowledge.

Today, I intend to talk briefly on a topic which most people treat lightly in spite of its relevance and importance to success or failure in life.


Interest means the feeling of having your attention and your mind excited by something or of wanting to be involved with and to discover more about something.

The BBC English Dictionary defines interest as follows:

  • If you have an interest in something, you want to know and learn something about it.
  • Your interest are the things you enjoy doing
  • If something interests you, you want to learn more about it or to continue doing it.
  • If you have an interest in something being done, you want it to be done because you benefit from it.

Interest in something serves as motivation which enables you to want to know more about it. It makes you more curious to know about it. It strengthens your desire to know about it. It gives you power and that power makes you tireless. Some of you must have heard and read about my journey through life. I was not as lucky as you are. But I have no regret. You have all attended very good secondary schools. Now you are in what students from other universities have described as five star university. Unlike you, I stopped my education in primary six I couldn’t go further due to lack of funds. Ordinarily, a person with only primary school education ought not to think of university degree. He seems to have been ipso facto relegated to the working class.

I never attended any college or university but I had a rare gift of profound interest in reading. My interest was to become a graduate no matter the difficulties. I was keenly interested in reading and was never tired of reading. There were some subjects which were not so easy to study at home but there were some which I found very interesting. I often got tired while working on difficult subjects. Yet it was important that I secured credits in those subjects before I could proceed further in my quest for a degree. My practice was to interpose the reading of interesting subjects with difficult ones. In the end, I found that my interest in the interesting subjects became infectious and I got interested in every subject.

In short, you can develop interest in a most difficult subject by transferring your interest to the difficult subject.

There are many cases where students lose interest because of bad teachers or bad teaching. As a student you must never lose interest in any subject because of a particular teacher. You must appreciate that there are bound to be difficult teachers. Your interest in achieving your ultimate goal should overcome any ill-feeling you may have against a subject or any teacher.



Smile is a slight turning up of the corners of the mouth. It is an expression of friendship or pleasure. It implies affection and suggests brightness with underlying enthusiasm.

Smiling makes us Attractive

There is an attraction factor because it draws people to you. It suggests you are good. Smiling draws people closer to one, while frowning pushes people away from you.

Smiling Changes ones mood

Smiling changes the mood of a person for the better. It drives away depression. It tells the body to change from moodiness.

Smiling is contagious

Smiling lightens up the immediate environment and changes the mood of others around you. A smiling person brings happiness to himself and others.

Smiling Relieves Stress

One important advantage of smiling is that smiling relieves stress, smiling helps to prevent you from looking tired, worn down, or overwhelmed. It has been suggested by scientists that when you are stressed, try and put on a smile. The stress would be reduced and you would be better and able to take actions.

Smiling Boost Immune System

It has been discovered that the immune system works better through smiling. It is because you are more relaxed when you smile.

When you are smiling there is a reduction in your blood pressure.

Smiling Lifts the face and makes you look younger

This is because the muscles we use to smile lift the face and therefore makes the person appears younger. You do not need a face lift, just smile, you would look younger and feel stronger.

Smiling makes you more successful

Smiling people are more confident than the moody. They are more likely to be promoted by their employer than the moody. They are more accessible and more approachable.

It is suggested that you put up a smile before your teachers at meetings, interviews and appointments. You will find out that there will be different reactions.

Smiling helps you stay positive

When we smile, our body sends the message that life is good, it makes you stay from depression, stress and worry.

Less energy on smiling

You spend less energy smiling whereas you spend more energy to become moody. Indeed you require more energy to sustain frowning or negative mood. Moody people develop hypertension, diseases and die earlier than smiling and cheerful people.



Interest and smile are sisters. If one has interest in what he does, he will automatically do it with a smile. With interest he will go beyond the normal call of duty, whether in learning or in any other job and do it with a smile.

There is an interesting quotation from a psychologist who says:

“Find something that interests you and which you love doing and make a profession of it, in doing it with a smile you will find that you will never have to work for a single day in your life”.

When I was working as a labourer in Clayton factory in Chelsea in London between 1962 and 1963, there was a recorded song titled “sing and smile while you work”. Every worker was happy to sing the song and smiled while we worked. We were never tired.

I can tell you that, if you have interest in what you do and do it with a smile, you would never know you are working throughout your life. Because I have interest in what I do and because I do smile while working, I only get tired after work.



The essence of the concept of interest and smiling at work is one that should concern us as a University community. As stated earlier, interest in what we do will definitely impact positively in whatever result we achieve from it. A teacher who has little or no interest in the subject he teaches his student will surely be unable to arouse the interest of the students in the subject. As that kind of teacher cannot be expected to teach the subject with a smile on his face, he is bound to send negative signals to the student not only about the subject and the University itself but also about the concept of education or knowledge impartation. Many teachers have overtime contributed to the failure of some of their students to develop any interest in some subject which are for no reason considered difficult. This to my mind explains what has been described as the lack of interest of most Nigerian students in mathematics, geography and English and the equally poor rate of performance recorded at examinations conducted by West African Examination Council (WAEC) and National Examination Council (NECO) and Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB).


I urge you to develop interest in your chosen courses. If you do so, you will never find learning and attendance at classes a difficult and unavoidable course which you must have to endure in order to obtain a degree. If your interest in the chosen course is cultivated and sustained, then you will find learning very easy and interesting and smile at all times.


Henceforth I expect that every member of this University community, the teachers, students, administrators and other members of staff to develop interest in what you do and do it with a smile.


This is the surest way to success.