By Nudoiba Ojen
An erudite academic and erstwhile top banker, Prof Elizabeth Oluwalana, will on by 2pm on Wednesday, February 7, 2024, mount the podium to deliver the 85th Inaugural Lecture of the Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta.
The title of the lecture, billed to be delivered at Oluwafemi Balogun Ceremonial Building on campus located on Alabata Road, Abeokuta, is, “Value Addition to Agricultural and Forest Resources: Means for Herbal Therapy and Entrepreneurial Skills Development”.
The lecture is expected to be chaired by the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Olusola Babatunde Kehinde.
Born on 19th September 1955,
Professor Elizabeth Olufunmilayo Oluwalana holds a B.Sc. degree in Agricultural Economics and M.Sc. in Banking and Finance from the University of Ibadan and Ph.D. Forestry Economics and Management from FUNAAB.
The acclaimed researcher first worked and had an extensive tenure in the banking sector for 20 years, rising to the position of Area/Regional Manager overseeing 26 branches in eight states namely, Ogun, Oyo, Osun, Ondo, Ekiti, Lagos, Kwara and Edo during which she guided over 200 agribusiness startups to success.
Prof Oluwalana later joined the services of FUNAAB in 2001 as an academic staff. She is an accomplished agricultural and resource economist renowned for her academic and research pursuits.
She is an Extension Fellow at the Agricultural Media Resources and Extension Centre (AMREC), FUNAAB, for her community linkages assignments and anchored to the Department of Agricultural Economics and Farm Management (AEFM) in the College of Agricultural Management and Rural Development (COLAMRUD) for her teaching and research assignments.
Her research delves into the Potential of Natural Resources Utilization, Entrepreneurship Skills Development, and Waste-to-Wealth Initiatives. She served as the Programme Leader of Gender Issues and Youth Development (GIYD) programme AMREC between 2014 and 2018 during which she introduced a sub-programme on Entrepreuneurship Skills Support for FUNAAB students.
In 2018, Prof Oluwalana was appointed pioneer Deputy Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Studies (CENTS), FUNAAB. During her tenure, she established projects to train FUNAAB Students, Staff, and the Public, in innovation and entrepreneurial skills in collaboration with GIZ German Cooperation, Wadhwani Foundation, and FADAMA, Office of Ogun State FADAMA Development (OGSFDO). She was the Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) Officer and a member of the CENTS/FUNAAB Management Team for GIZ.
As a university lecturer, she has been teaching for over 20 years, imparting knowledge in courses like Agricultural Economics, Agricultural Marketing, and Entrepreneurship in Agriculture for undergraduate and postgraduate students. Her dedication to education is evidenced by over 48 publications to her credit in high impact and reputable media within and outside the country, and numerous accolades, including the “Entrepreneurship Promoter of the Year” by the Enterprise Promotion Academy in partnership with the International Centre for Entrepreneurship & Career Development, Ahmedabad, India.
She has supervised over 120 undergraduate, over 20 postgraduate and 2 MBA (Agric.) students. She is a multi-award winner, she had 18 awards both internationally and locally and 16 letters of commendation/appreciation from different AMREC Directors and Vice-Chancellors. She is noted for exhibition of her value added herbal products in local, national and international events.
According to Google Scholar, Prof Oluwalana has 168 citations, h-index of 6 and 10-index of 4. In Research Gate, her papers read stands at 8,963 and 55 citations
She is married to Professor Samuel Adeniran Oluwalana and the marriage is blessed with children and grandchildren.