Established in February 2012, the Nigerian Research and Education Network (NgREN) has already made great strides in improving communication among schools and research institutions across Nigeria. Founded with funds from the World Bank and through the cooperation of the Committee of Vice-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities (CVC) and the National Universities Commission (NUC), the organization has strived to create a national network that can ensure access to broadband Internet connections, as well as a network monitoring center to keep the connections working smoothly. In recognition of these efforts, Nigerian president Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan hosted a September 2014 event at the Presidential Villa.
The president emphasized the degree to which work remains to be done, especially in expanding the network to reach institutions of higher education across Nigeria. However, in an address to the NUC Governing Board, he praised NgREN for its exceptional efforts, highlighting the program as an important part of his administration’s overall agenda. Currently, the network accommodates 27 universities, but in additional remarks, the vice president, Namadi Sambo, noted his support of President Jonathan’s wishes that the network be expanded further. Professor Julius Okojie, the NgREN board chairman and executive secretary for NUC, spoke for all in attendance in declaring the project an important part of bringing Nigeria’s educational system into the 21st century.