One of the newest faculty hires in the School Arts & Sciences, Professor Mahamadou Lamine Sagna, has painted his impressions of AUN as a friendly environment, and an institution of great scholars endowed with quality teaching and learning facilities.
“People [at AUN] are very, very kind,” said the sociologist, originally from Senegal.
Prof. Sagna, who taught for about nine years at Ivy-League Princeton before coming to AUN, said: AUN feels like Princeton and is a suitable entity for research and teaching.
“There are no reasons why AUN should not be a top-class university, given the quality of facilities and scholars available.
“I am discovering that we have good scholars like Paddy himself (a reference to Dr. Patrick Fay, the former Irish Ambassador to Nigeria and interim Dean of SAS).”
The Université de Caen alumnus expressed his delight to join the AUN family and coming back home to contribute to Africa. He also shared some of his experiences from his initial interaction with students.
“AUN students are very enthusiastic. I am very proud to come back here, because, for eight years, I tried to come back to Africa.
“I was involved in a big project we had for AUST (African University of Science & Technology) where I was chairing the Social Science Committee. In 2005, we tried to come back to do something in our continent because I have never worked for Africa.” The man has spent 35 years outside – between France and the USA.
Prof Sagna, who teaches International & Comparative Politics at AUN, applauded AUN’s development philosophy. He added that he is mostly influenced by community-based practices, where solutions to societal problems are found within that society.
Noting the dysfunctional value of wholesale adoption of alien models, Prof Sagna said, “I think one of the biggest problems for finance in Africa is because we take a model from a Western country and apply it here in Nigeria.”
He also stated that one of his focus areas would be impacting the students to be better citizens by identifying themselves first as Nigerians before their ethnic or religious origins.
“I think I will be very successful when I see my students thinking I’m first Nigerian before Igbo, Yoruba, or whatever.”
Associate Professor Mahamadou Lamine Sagna holds a Ph.D. in Sociology, an MBA and Masters in Business Administration & Ethnic Psychiatry from France. He has written books and articles including a Huffington Post publication, African Pension Funds: The missing Link to African Development?
He is the founder and Executive Director of Re-Source/Sununet, a Senegalese Diaspora Organization and before joining AUN, he was a Researcher at Laboratory of Social and Political Change of Paris VII - Diderot in France.
Reported by Togor Passa