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The Catholic Institute of West Africa, Port Harcourt

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Address: Aba Road, Port Harcourt

Gender: Boys and girls

Religion: Chiristian

About The Catholic Institute of West Africa, Port Harcourt

The Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA) is a higher Ecclesiastical Institute of the Catholic Church in the West African Sub-region. It was founded in 1981 by the then Association of Episcopal Conference of Anglophone West Africa (AECAWA) for the study of theology and related disciplines in the socio-cultural context of West Africa. The Institute took off on the 8th of December 1981 at Ozuoba in Port Harcourt, Nigeria in a house formerly used by Jesuit Priests as a Retreat Centre. Its present proprietor is the RECOWA/CERAO.

It started with eight students and eight academic and administrative staff with the late Monsignor Stephen Ezeanya, who later became the Archbishop of Onitsha, as Rector. A year later, the Institute moved to its present site, a former minor Seminary as an interim solution to an acute accommodation problem. Presently, the Institute has an expansive staff Quarters at Obehie in Abia State, where most senior academic and administrative staff reside and which also contains a hostel for female religious students of the Institute. In September, 2014, CIWA took back possession of its campus at Obehie, which was used temporarily as a Take-Off Campus for the VERITAS University as the Catholic University relocated eventually to its permanent site in Abuja. Presently, the Obehie CIWA Campus accommodates all Undergraduate Programmes and the two cycles of Communication Studies.

Basic Information

Founded: 1981

Address: Aba Road, Port Harcourt

LGA: Port Harcourt 1 , TOWN/CITY: Port Harcourt , STATE: Rivers

Category: Institute,

Ownership: Missionary

Gender: Boys and girls

Religion: Chiristian

Facility: Boarding School

+2348165037165 ,

Fee Range: -


Our Mission Statement

The overall vision, mission and guiding principles of the Catholic Institute of West Africa (CIWA) as an educational institution are encapsulated in the words of St. Augustine, a co-patron of the Institute (St. Thomas Aquinas is the other Patron), which the Institute has adopted as a Motto, namely: Semper Agents, Semper Quietus. This is a synthesis of Action and Contemplation, of Study and Prayer as general landmark of intellectual work and scholarship in a Christian context. The activities of the Institute are therefore fashioned to project in contextual systematic discourses, essential values of variant cultures and traditions of the West African sub-region. This is with a view to enhancing a better understanding and commitment of the Christian faith within the various socio-cultural contexts. Deep-rooted academic engagements; such activities as Community Mass, Annual Theology Week Programmes, Foundation Day & Patrons Day Celebrations; including other culturally-oriented institutional activities are avenues the Institute puts the phenomenon of contextualization and enculturation into practice.

Admission Requirements

Bachelor’s Programme in Communication Studies

The Admission requirements into the Undergraduate Programme are as follows:

Applicants for the Bachelor’s Degree Program must have five credits, including English and Christian Religious Knowledge in the WASC/GCE/NECO or SSCE examinations in one sitting, or Six credits and above including English Language and Christian Religious Knowledge, in not more than two sittings of either WASC/GSE/NECO or SSCE examinations taken, or An applicant with an additional diploma degree in Christian Religious Studies or an NCE (Religious major or any related discipline) from a recognized institution may be allowed to complete the programme in Three instead of four years.

Master’s Programme in Theology (MTh/STL)

Admission to the programme is open to candidates who hold at least a second class lower division bachelor’s degree in theology with B or 2.75 grade point average. Applicants who hold the Bachelor’s degree with a lower grade point average may be admitted to a one year Supplementary Programme to admitted to a one year Supplementary Programme to qualify for admission to the STL (M.Th) Programme. A candidate who fails a resit in the Supplementary Programme examination will not be admitted to the STL (M.TH) Programme.

In addition to the specific requirements of different academic units, it is required that all the STL (M.TH) degree at the Institute possess a minimum of a reading knowledge of French, Latin and Biblical Greek. Courses in French and Latin are offered at the Institute during the long vacation (August-September). Prospective students are expected to take one of these courses before the commencement of their first school year at the Institute, and another one after their first year at the Institute. Greek is offered during the school year. To be exempted from any of these courses, a student must show proof of proficiency either by presenting a Certificate/Diploma in the Language or by passing a proficiency test administered by the Institute.

Master’s Programme in Communication Studies

A BA in Theology, Philosophy, Humanities, Communication, or Social Science. Other BA backgrounds may also be considered.Some work experience in communication of allied fields. Readiness to work hard and in harmony with others.

PhD Programme in Theology

Admission to the Ph.D. programme in Theological studies is in accordance with the gene

ral University requirements for higher degrees in the University of Calabar. Candidates with the M.Th. degree from the University of Calabar and other recognised University may be considered for admission.The applicant shall be admitted to the graduate programme of the Faculty upon achieving a grade point average of3.00. He or she may be advanced to the Ph.D. level on the recommendation of the Graduate School. All candidates for the doctorate degree in Theology shall be required to possess a good working knowledge of Greek, Latin, French and German. Additional language requirements are prescribed for the specialization in sacred scripture.


As at now, CIWA has two campuses; the Main Campus is located in Port Harcourt with the central and main administrative offices, and the second campus at Obehie, about 25 kilometres from Port Harcourt on the road to Aba, Abia State. This second campus is a very large compound with sections for Staff Quarter, Students’ Hostels (including a Female Religious Hostel), Classroom Blocks, Library, Chapel, Refectory, a big auditorium etc. However, apart from the Staff Quarter where the resident Senior Staff (Academic and Administrative) Hence, CIWA Campus Life for students is still very much viable to what obtains in the Port Harcourt Campus. The following are brief highlights on the campus life.

CIWA main campus (in Port Harcourt) has 2 hostels: Hostel A and Hostel B. Hostel A is a big, 3 storey building of over 70 rooms meant mainly for priest students, but students who are male religious (i.e., Brothers) are also accommodated there. Hostel B is a twin bungalow of over 20 rooms. Hostels B are also meant for male students, priests and brothers. Female Religious students (i.e. Sisters) are accommodated in Obehie hostels, near the Port Harcourt campus, while lay students (both men and women) are expected to find accommodation for themselves in Port Harcourt City. However, should a prospective lay student be coming from a distance or overseas whereby they may not be familiar with the streets of Port Harcourt or how to rent an accommodation apartment therein, CIWA can assist them to look for a good accommodation within the city. It is hoped that in the near future, CIWA will be able to provide some accommodation for such students. Where possible, such candidates may be accommodated in our Obehie campus in the meantime. Obehie campus has accommodation for both lay students and religious as well. School buses are available that convey students living in the Obehie campus to and from the Port Harcourt campus every day for lectures and other activities. The hostels in the Port Harcourt campus are equipped with various facilities a student would need for convenient studies and rest. These include in each room: a 12 inches bed with mattress, a sizeable reading desk and chairs, a large shelf for books and other things, etc. Each room is also self-contained with its own toilet and bathroom with 24-hours water supply, and a balcony that some may use as a mini-kitchen. Each room is also self-contained with its own toilet and bathroom with 24-hours water supply, and a balcony that some may use as a mini-kitchen for minor cooking such as boiling water, etc.

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CIWA has three Faculties currently– The Faculty of Theology, Faculty of Canon Law and Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. These Faculties have nine academic programmes, namely: Biblical Theology, Dogmatic Theology, Moral Theology, Pastoral/Spirituality, Liturgy, Canon Law, Religious Studies, Philosophy and Communication Studies. In addition, a Centre for the Study of African Culture and Communication (CESACC) was established in the 2003/2004 academic year. The Centre runs programmes at the first and second cycle levels (Diploma, Bachelors, Post Graduate Diploma, Masters And Doctorate Degree Programmes i Communication Studies).

At the Undergraduate level, the Institute also runs sub-degree Diploma and Certificate Programmes in Theology, Philosophy and Communication Studies. At this level, it has outreach programmes, through affiliation with some catechetical Centres located in different parts of the Nigeria. Through these outreach programmes CIWA reaches a considerable number of lay Christians.

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