Reverend Prof. Emmanuel Adow Obeng, President, Presbyterian University College on Saturday reiterated the call on technical universities in the country to avoid the “temptation” to offer non-technical courses.
He said the future of Ghana hinged was embedded in technical education and that the only way they could make meaningful contribution to national development was to stay focus on providing technical and vocational skills to the youth.
Rev. Prof. Obeng who was addressing the 19th congregation of the Ho Technical University noted that following the conversion of polytechnics to technical universities, some were tempted to introduce non-technical courses to compete with traditional universities and cautioned against the practice.
He said technical universities were to play complementary and not competitive roles to traditional universities, and charged them to concentrate on providing skilled human resource for national development.
Rev. Prof. Obeng asked technical universities to address emerging governance issues after the conversion, especially misunderstandings between labour unions and administrative staff because such mix-ups could affect their focus.
He asked the universities to organize regular management training sessions, develop succession plans and orient teaching and non-teaching staff of their new roles.
Rev. Prof. Obeng urged governing councils of technical universities to put monitoring systems in place for lecturers and seek support from government and other sources to develop faculty and the universities.
Prof. Kwasi Yankah, Minister of State in charge of Tertiary Education in a speech read on his behalf said transitional issues including salary migration of technical university staff were being addressed and restated government’s commitment to technical and vocational education.
He charged technical universities to design programmes that would prepare students to take advantage of government’s intervention programmes like One District, One Farm to employ themselves.
Prof. Ben Honyenuga, Acting Vice Chancellor, Ho Technical University said the University was giving meaning to Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) by ensuring that students were fully equipped with requisite skills for industry.
He said students of the ICT Department of the University for instance were embarking on networking some identified offices that were without Local Area Network, to demonstrate their practical skills.
Prof. Honyenuga said a learning management system had also been developed by students of the Computer Science Department to aid teaching and learning and that the system was undergoing testing for deployment.
He hinted of plans by the University to introduce five new bachelor programmes, which he said were critical to national development and called for assistance to address infrastructure and facility shortfalls.
Prof. Honyenuga advised the graduands to see opportunities in the mist of challenges and take bold steps to operationalize their ideas to employ themselves.
He said the University’s Centre of Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Technology Transfer was ready to assist them grow.
A total of 1,290 students graduated, 37 with Bachelor of Technology (B. Tech.) and 1,253 with Higher National Diploma (HND).
Out of the number, 86 obtained first class honours, 755, second class upper division, 416, second class lower division and 33 pass.