HISTORY OF ST MONICA GIRLS’ COMPREHENSIVE COLLEGE OGUI, ENUGU
St Monica’s Vocational Centre Ogui Enugu was founded in 1970 by His Lordship Rt. Rev. Dr Mary Paul Okoye of blessed memory. The founding of School was necessitated by the need to rehabilitate young girls who dropped out of school as a result of the Nigerian Civil war. Then, most girls were force into early marriages as many lost their parents and guardians to the brutal war. The catholic church took the challenge of absorbing such girls to give them a meaningful life; hence St Monica’s vocational training center came to being.
It was initially called St Monica’s domestic center, known for training young girls in dress making, hair dressing, wig making, mother craft etc. the popular St Monica’s bread was a product of the school
The school started with forty- four students who offered several courses classified under two departments mother craft and home management. Thus, in addition to craft learnt, students were also taught how to manage their prospective families, cuddle their babies, dress well for home parties, receive guest warmly and keep their homes neat and tidy.
Subsequently the school grew in population and strength and more courses in catering and secretarial studies were introduced. As a result, from the early eighties, the school had three departments namely catering and Craft; Hotel Management, Home Economics and Secretarial studies. The students embarked on a three-month industrial training before graduation to enable them gain exposure and experience in relation to their career.
St Monica’s vocational center obtained Government approval in 1989, following which it became a center for National Business and Technical Examination (NABTEB) which qualified her graduate for entry into the higher institutions.
Sequel to an observed mismanagement of the institution responsible for a decline in population and their output, an administration in the person of very Rev. Fr. O.A Iloanusi and a board of Governors of the school chaired by Dr. Emeka Obiora were appointed in 2003. The team which worked tirelessly no less repositioned the school and returned it to glory once more.
In his wisdom to consolidate on the gains of his processor and to forestall a recurrence of maladministration, Very Rev. Dr. C. V. C. Onaga appointed Rev. Fr. Udenwagu as the director of the institution when he became her administrator in 2006. Their legendary innovations and outstanding leadership changed the fate of the school, leading to a significant improvement in students’ population.
By the early 2007, students, parents, and guardians embark on massive agitation; requesting that the student be made to sit for the junior and senior certificate examinations to increase their chances of gaining university education. Consequently, a proposal was made to the state ministry of education which necessitated also the move for the change of name to the current ST. MONICA GIRLS’ COMPREHENSIVE COLLEGE OGUI, ENUGU, (SMGCC).
In 2009, Very Rev. Fr. Dr. John Nwafor took over as the administrator and Rev. Fr. Anthony Ani, the director, following Ani’s short stay, the Holy Ghost Parish Catechist, Mr. Anselm Okoye directed the institution briefly and was succeeded by Rev. Fr. Aloysius Ezeoba still in 2009.
The duo of Rev. Fr. Dr. John Nwafor and Fr. Ezeoba relentlessly pursued and secured Ministry’s approval, leading to the first junior secondary school Certificate Examination (Now Basic Education Certificate examination) of the institution in 2010
In 2012, under the same administrator, Rev. Fr. Jude Ezimakor became the Director of the institution. The dynamism of the current administration under the watching eyes of the bishop and former administrator of the school, has given SMGCC a new history. It has become a full boarding school, the staff strength has doubled, it has been given an aesthetic face lift, now has fully equipped laboratories and library, sat for her maiden Senior Certificate Examinations (WAEC AND NECO) with wonderful results in 2013, participates in intra and inter-school quiz and debate competitions, her catering department now produce assorted bead products – necklaces, bangles, bags etc., confectionaries- cakes, meat- pies, etc., is undertaken a multimillion-naira classroom complex and today, the school is rolling out her drums to celebrate her maiden Inter-House Athletic Competition and Craft Exhibition in styles.
In December 2015, St. Monica witnessed a change of administration, while Rev. Fr. Jude Ezimakor proceeded for further studies abroad, Rev. Fr. Michael Amobi Ogbu was appointed the Administrator of St Monica Girls’ Comprehensive College. This was indeed a turning point in the life and history of SMGCC, for it is the first time the school is having a sole Administrator. The collaboration of the staff has indeed brought uncommon development and transformation to school.
Accordingly, in order to address the issue of facelift and accommodation problem faced by the school, Fr Ogbu embarked on aggressive development of both physical and internal structures of the school. This brought about the completion of Bishop C.V.C Onaga academic block and its blessing and dedication on the 2nd of July 2017 by His Lordship Most Rev. C.V.C Onaga.
In order to address the challenge of poor accommodation, Fr Ogbu equally embarked on the renovation and reconstruction of the old school hostel. At the completion of the renovation work, the hostel was blessed and commissioned by the state education Secretary, Very Rev. Msgr. Ugonna Igboaja on the 20th of October 2017.
Sequel to the appeal by the management of SMGCC to the Bishop during his visit on 2nd July 2017; for expansion of the school compound to provide for play ground for sporting activities, the State Education Secretary Msgr. Ugonna Igboaja graciously, seceded the Education Commission Secretariat building to SMGCC. This happened in a ceremony attended by the Bishop Most Rev. C.V.C Onaga, the Auxiliary Bishop, Most Rev. E.A Obodo, the members of the old complex handed over to SMGCC on Thursday 27th September 2018.
The March toward the aesthetic improvement and facelift of the school equally witnessed the pulling down of the old school gate and the erection of a new school gate and ultra-modern security house by
The Fr. Ogbu administration. This project was blessed and commissioned by Bishop C.V.C. Onaga on the 7th of December 2018. The following were in attendance, the cathedral Administrator Very Rev. Msgr. Chucks Ogbuene, the Education Secretary 1, Rev. Fr. Jude Nzekwe, the school Administrator, Rev. Fr. Michael Ogbu, the Principal, Sir Innocent Amadi among others.
As a permanent solution to the problem of accommodation, a new two-story hostel block is presently under construction in the school. The academic life of the school has equally experienced a remarkable transformation. To the glory of God, the school can now boast of a good reading environment and atmosphere.
Other project by the present administration include:
- Installation of Over-head tank and more than 10 tanks of 1000 liters capacity each to address the problem of water.
- Attraction of the donation of more than 1000 books from Bookmyschool (A Lagos based NGO)
- The construction and setting up of the Ike Chioke Library
- Complete fencing of the school compound
So far, the school have participated successfully several competitions, some of which are:
- Enugu Diocesan Catholic Education Secretariat Academic Competition 2016. (1st,2nd,3rd position)
- Oja Cultural Festival 2017 – 1st position
- Oja Cultural festival 2018 – 2nd position
- Go University Annual Peace Confrence Eassy Writing Competition (4th and 3rd positions)
BISHOP C.V.C ONAGA ACADEMIC BLOCK