The University of Calabar
The University of Calabar was established on 25th October, 1975. It grew out of the Calabar Campus of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka which began functioning as such in the 1973/74 academic session with 154 students and a small cadre of academic, administrative and technical staff.
In April, 1975, the Federal Military Government of Nigeria announced that, as part of the Third National Development Plan, seven
new universities would be established at selected locations throughout the country.
The University of Calabar was one of the seven universities established under this
programme by the Federal Military Government.
Located in Calabar, an ancient city with a long tradition of culture and contact with
western civilization, the already developed area of the University covers a
seventeen-hectare site on the Eastern side of the town, between the Great Kwa River
and the Calabar River.
Additional land has been acquired on both banks of the Great Kwa River for development of
The University began academic work in three Faculties, namely Arts, Science and Social Sciences
in October 1976 with an initial enrolment of 977. Of these 406, were carried over from the University of Nigeria.
The teaching, administrative and technical staff, either transferred from the University of Nigeria or newly recruited, numbered about 156. At the beginning of the 1977/78 academic year, the Department of Education, formerly a part of the Faculty of Arts, was upgraded to the Faculty of Education. In 1978/79 academic year, the Medical School was added.
The Faculty of Law was established during 1979/80 academic year and began offering courses in October 1980. The Faculty of Agriculture was established during the 1980/81 session.
From its inception in 1975, the University of Calabar has been guided by certain fundamental
considerations in its academic and other activities. Established at the peak of the national outcry against corruption, nepotism, indiscipline and indolence, the University sought a citizenry imbued with high sense of duty and conscious of its responsibilities to the Nigerian nation. Thus, character receives as much emphasis in our training as academics. The University was the first in the country to establish an annual Pro-Chancellor’s Prize for the Best Behaved Student of the Graduating Class.
Besides, as a Federal Institution, the University seeks to establish on the campus an atmosphere
where Nigerians from all States and linguistic groups in the country can cultivate healthy
social inter-group relations.
Indeed, almost all States of the Federation are represented in the student population of the institution which also enjoys patronage from neighbouring countries of Cameroon, Ghana, and Benin Republic.
The University has also consciously sought to learn from the mistakes of older Nigerian universities by adopting a rather flexible and forward looking attitude with regard to academic programming. Thus, from its inception, the University adopted the Four-Year integrated degree programme based on the semester system and the course system in its Faculties.
The University also makes conscious use of local materials for instructional purposes in the sincere effort to make her programmes relevant to the needs of Nigeria. Though not responsible to the State in which it is located, the University is responsive to the genuine aspirations and interests of her immediate community and interacts freely with that community through her programmes in Adult and Continuing Education, Comprehensive Healthcare Scheme, as well as Symposia, Seminars and Workshops organized not infrequently on and off campus. Founded at the peak of the cultural renaissance in the country and situated in an area of the country distinguished for her rich culture, the University prides itself as a significant academic custodian of the rich culture of the people through the performance of our Department of Theatre Arts, which, within the short period of its existence, has established an enviable record for itself in Nigeria and abroad.