History of the Department
The Department of Religion and Human Relations was originally called Department of Religious Studies. It was created as a unit in the Department of Arts in 1993/1994 academic session. This Department was headed by Very Rev. Msgr. Dr. J.P.C. Nzomiwu (now Professor). The unit of Religious Studies operated then with two foundational staff, Very Rev. Fr. Dr. J.P.C. Nzomiwu and Rev. Canon Dr. D.C. Okeke.
Ever since its inception, the Department has grown from strength to strength especially in the development of its programmes, growth of Staff and Students and increase in facilities for lecturers and studies. The Department has fifteen members of the Academic Staff (4 Professors; 3 Senior Lecturers; 3 Lecturer Is; 5 Graduate Assistants), three non teaching Staff with work aids and sometimes a youth corper.
We are grateful to the foundational Head of Department from 1993 to 2002 in the person of Very Rev. Msgr. Prof. J.P.C. Nzomiwu and subsequent Heads of Department in the persons of The Very Rev Prof. D.C. Okeke, (2003 – 2006), Prof. J.E. Madu (2002-2003; 2006 – 2008), Rev. Fr. Prof. A.B.C. Chiegboka (2008 – 2012) and now Prof. J.E. Madu (from 2012). We thank the various Deans of the faculty (viz: Rev. Prof. E. Ikenga Metuh; Prof. C.C. Agbodike; Very Rev. Msgr. Prof. J.P.C. Nzomiwu; Prof Okey Umeh; Rev. Fr. Prof. J. O. Oguejiofor, Prof. D.C. Agu, Prof. Alex Asigbo, Rev. Fr. Prof. B.A.C. Obiefuna and now, Prof. Tracie Utoh-Ezeajugh) and the Vice-Chancellors of the University (viz: Prof. Nwako, Prof. Pita Ejiofor, Prof. Ilochi Okafor, SAN, Prof. B. C.E. Egboka, and currently, Prof, Joseph E. Ahaneku (FAS)) and the various offices of the University Administration, especially the SENATE of the University, Registry, DVCs, DAP, Curriculum Committee, Dean, PG School for their respective contributions in the development of the Department in both her programmes, personnel and students in-takes.
In 2005, the Department applied and got approval for the change of its name from DEPARTMENT OF RELIGIOUS STUDIES to DEPARTMENT OF RELIGION AND HUMAN RELATIONS. The motor is: RELIGION FOR INTEGRAL HUMAN RELATIONS.
The Department runs the following academic programmes:
- Regular Programme at the Undergraduate (B.A) and Postgraduate (M.A. Ph.D.) levels.
- Continuing Education Programme (CEP) at the Undergraduate level only.
- Sandwich Programme at the Undergraduate level only.
With the desire to accommodate our new nomenclature in the courses mounted in the department, we redesigned our programmes for B.S., incumbent Vice Chancellor, Prof. B.C.E. Egboka, our new programmes of studies were approved by the University Senate. During the 133rd Meeting of the University Senate held on Wednesday April 1, 2009, of the senate approved for implementation the new Undergraduate programme with effect from 2009/2010 academic year. The same happened to the new Postgraduate programme which was approved for presentation to the Senate by the Postgraduate Board on May 27, 2009. In the 135th Meeting of the Senate on June 17, 2009, UNIZIK Senators ratified the programme with effect from 2009. All these programmes are accommodated in the 2009 published in the first ever DEPARTMENTAL HANDBOOK under the leadership of Rev. Fr. Prof. A.B.C. Chiegboka. The Handbook contains the format for writing B.A. projects, M.A. Thesis and Ph.D Dissertations materials from General Academic Regulations.
The members of the Academic Staff have made giant contributions within the areas of our specialization which include Religion and Society; African Traditional Religion; History of Christianity; Biblical Studies and Theology. This is evident in the emergence of five professors since her emergence in 1993.