7th Congregation Speech
SPEECH BY DR. OSEI K. DARKWA, PRESIDENT, GHANA TECHNOLOGY UNIVERSITY COLLEGE ON THE OCCASION OF THE 7TH CONGREGATION CEREMONY ON FRIDAY, MARCH 14, 2014
GTUC Council Members Present The Vice Chancellor of KNUST and his entourage Special Guest from Coventry and Aalborg Universities Distinguished Guests GTUC Faculty and Staff present, Proud Family members Friends of Graduands, Graduands,
Friends of the Press,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
On behalf of the University and myself, I wish to welcome you all to this occasion and, secondly to congratulate our graduands for having worked so hard to this point and harvest the fruits of their labour. As a University, we are proud of our contribution to the nation’s human capital through the training of highly skilled manpower. As I stand here today, I cannot help but feel a sense of pride as we turn out these knowledgeable individuals who would fit into enviable positions to meet the human resource needs of our dear nation.
Today, 230 graduates will be receiving awards in their respective disciplines in a one graduate programme. This class is composed of graduates for programmes that we run in collaboration with Coventry University, UK and Aalborg University, Germany.
Distinguished Ladies and Gentlemen, the much awaited day has finally come, one of celebration and not for long speeches. But, permit me to share some few thoughts about the strategic direction of the University with you.
The onus of defining the strategic direction for this institution began almost nine years ago when the university was formally inaugurated. Eight years after attaining accreditation, the university college has moved from a modest, humble and challenging beginning and, is now well positioned as a college of quality and distinction, offering professional development programmes and quality tertiary education to over five thousand students. The University continues to be a self-financing institution through internally generated funds and funds accessed in the form of grants from donors and stakeholder organisations.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, consistent with global trends in higher education, we are committed to establishing partnership with academic and industrial partners from various parts of the world. Today, we have academics partnership with countries such as the United Kingdom, Germany, Denmark, India, South Korea, France, China and the United States. The African continent has not been left out. Within Africa, we have academic and training partners in countries such as South Africa, Benin, Kenya, and the Republic of Gabon.
Through our collaboration and partnerships, we have been able to build the capacity of our staff and faculty, brought cutting edge undergraduate and post-graduate programmes to the people of Ghana, introduced highly advanced and innovative educational technologies within our institution, implement new educational models, and exchanged experiences and best practices.
As we transition from a traditional brick and mortar university to a university that uses the technology of today to bring education to its students, it has become necessary to expand our base from our main campus in Accra to the regions of Ghana and the West African sub-region. Today, we have regional campuses and learning centres in four regions in Ghana-Ashanti, Eastern, Volta and Western. In addition, we have learning and recruitment centres in Lagos, Nigeria. As the student population continues to increase, and as we deploy new online courses, additional campuses and learning centres will be established in other parts of the country and the sub-region. The regional spread will enable the university to achieve its goal of establishing an open educational system that will promote anytime, anywhere learning.
RESEARCH AND INNOVATION
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I am pleased to share with you the numerous awards GTUC has received within the year. In March of this year, the school received the Business Initiative Directive Quality Summit Award in the platinum category in Geneva for its contribution to technology education. Again, in June, the university was honored with the Socrates Award for being one of Africa’s most progressive universities. And, in early December, the school received the European Society for Quality Research Best Practices Award, an award that recognizes the outstanding commitment, support and results in quality management strategies. We are proud of these awards and will work to win more of such prestigious awards for the university.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, today is for graduands to celebrate their achievements. We’ve all come to celebrate their hard work, dedication, commitment and sacrifice, and to share their joy and happiness. As we celebrate with you, we also celebrate the contribution of all the other stakeholders of this great university; the faculty, administrative and supporting Staff who have made this day a reality for you.
You all deserve congratulations on your academic achievement. Even though you are graduating from this great institution, you should remember that learning has now become a lifelong experience. In the words of Frederick Robertson, “Instruction ends in the classroom but education ends only with life”. Always remember that to achieve future success; you will have to maintain your competitive edge through continuing education. GTUC therefore gladly invites all of you to its exciting, rewarding and industry relevant doctoral programmes.
As graduates of this University College, we formally introduce you to the world to serve as ambassadors of this special community. We present to you the corporate world to announce your readiness to serve, readiness to accept challenges and your preparedness to impact the world you find yourselves in.
Your sojourn at GTUC has ended ushering you into yet another exciting phase of life’s journey. As part of the GTUC family and members of this special community, we are proud of you. Your discomforts, toil and sacrifice has finally paid off.
It is said in the bible that ‘he who much is given, much I s expected’. Your training at GTUC has exposed you to a lot in terms of contents and experience. You have added value to yourselves and therefore much is expected of you. It is incumbent on you to deliver wherever you go per the training you have received in your respective programmes of study. This is the time to contribute meaningfully to the development of our society and Ghana as a whole.
Nelson Mandela once said, ‘after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb’. I encourage you to climb many more hills by furthering your education to enable you graduate with higher educational credentials.
Graduands, in all your interactions and experiences, each of you has acquired or poses me unique traits that make you exceptional despite the differences in programmes of study. The expectation is that you use what you have learnt here to make a difference in the lives of individuals and organization that you might comes into contact with.
Your status in society has changed; doors will open to you and we urge you to take advantage of every opportunity made available to make a difference. Your contributions will help make our society better.
We will follow your success, and we know you will be successful. When the good times come, as they will, please don’t forget your alma mater.