By Kenneth Jukpor
In a bid to fill the void in human capacity occasioned by the lack of supply chain courses in Nigerian tertiary institutions, the Malaysia University of Science and Technology (MUST) has unveiled Masters Business Administration (MBA) in supply chain in Nigeria, facilitated by Multimix Academy.
The unveiling of the MBA Supply Chain programme took place at the headquarters of Multimix Academy in Surulere, Lagos at the weekend with lectures taking place shortly after the opening ceremony.
Highlighting the significance of the new development in his keynote address, the Managing Director of MDS Logistics, Mr. Solomon Aigbavboa noted that the challenges of infrastructure and non-availability of skilled workforce in supply chain would be curbed with the introduction of MBA in supply chain in the country.
According to Aigbavboa, knowledge of the 10 core modules which include; Management Economics, Operations Management, Business Statistics, Business Accounting and Finance, Business Research Methods, Managing Information Systems, Marketing Management, Corporate Strategy, Human Resource Management and Leadership and Management in Organization, is a prerequisite for an effective management of supply chain of all sectors all over the world.
“The good thing about supply chain is that there are many opportunities and few degree-awarding schools in the world. There is none in Nigeria yet. For example, almost every university offers a finance degree but the field of job applicants with degrees in Supply Chain Management (SCM) is far smaller. SCM graduates are more likely to stand out, compared with applicants who don’t have supply chain degree. This wasn’t so in the last decade in Nigeria, giving more credence to the programme we are unveiling in Nigeria today”, he said.
“As we witness the unveiling of this programme today, we are not only witnessing history in the making, we are also drawing the attention of both the private and public sectors of the country to a critical aspect of our nationhood, which is a national focus on the supply chain education”, Aigbavboa stated.
Meanwhile the Director General of Multimix Academy, Dr. Obiora Madu told MMS Plus that it was erroneous to think that online programmes aren’t recognized.
He said, “As far as I’m concerned, globalization has ensured that people can take courses without knowing the colours of the university. However this one isn’t entirely online as the first two modules are face to face.”
The Multimix Director General noted that over 80% of Malaysia’s export comes from the manufacturing sector, thus he commended institutions like MUST for contributing to the nation’s economy.
Dr. Obiora said, “Everybody knows that Malaysia collected palm fruits from Nigeria in 1962, but go to Malaysia today and you will be amazed to see what they have done with the palm fruits. I find MUST very robust, with very efficient learning systems and capable lecturers. I am excited because MUST guarantees quality and this is what Multimix Academy is known for”
Dr. Obiora expressed confidence that the students can be proud of the MUST certificate because they have also successfully established centres in London, Pakistan, Mauritius, and they continue to show their zeal as they bring their programmes to other countries like Nigeria.
He said, “There are universities offering Transport and Logistics, but none offers Supply Chain. However Supply Chain is wider than logistics. Logistics is about movement and storage but Supply Chain goes further. It is the end to end which includes the final consumer. Transport is a component of logistics and logistics is a component of supply chain.”
Dr. Obiora also expressed confidence that the programme would lead to a revolution in the supply chain industry in Nigeria. He said the industry is still at the infancy because only the big conglomerates have Supply Chain Directors. “By the time Nigerian companies start adopting Supply Chain, these candidates would be in the fore-front of the opportunities” he added.
On this part, the Head of Postgraduate Studies at MUST, Dr. Janaka Low explained the requirements.
He said, “If the prospective candidate has first degree, he or she needs to have 5 years work experience, but if the person is in supply chain, then he or she only needs 3 years experience irrespective of his or her level.”
“We also have provisions for matured candidates, for example, someone who has been the Managing Director of a freight forwarding company for so long. This is an opportunity for such people to expand their scope and knowledge”.
Dr. Low also noted that the duration of the programme is one year.