The government has secured over $100 million facility from the China Exim Bank for infrastructural upgrade and provision of equipment and training for use by polytechnics, technical institutes and technical universities in the country.
The Ministry of Education is therefore working hard to ensure the takeoff of these projects before the end of the first quarter of 2019.
The Minister of Education Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, who revealed this, remarked: “We will continue to work relentlessly to ensure that the needed support is provided to allow our technical universities to run smoothly”.
The Minister of Education disclosed this at the 3rd congregation ceremony of the Takoradi Technical University (TTU) held on Saturday.
It was on the theme: “Technical Education in the Context of the Present National Development Agenda: The Role of Technical Universities”.
In all, 2,027 students graduated and out of the number, 1,432 of them obtained Higher National Diploma (HND) and 445 graduated with Bachelor of Technology Degree.
One hundred and forty-eight (148) of the students were Civil Engineering graduands who received HND competence-based training certificate from the National Board for Professional and Technician Examinations (NABPTEX).
Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh who represented President Akufo-Addo stressed that government was undertaking several reforms to improve learning outcomes to ensure that they were both relevant and linked to industry needs.
“These include reforms in Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) which have led to the five-year strategic plan for the sector. The success or otherwise of these reforms will depend largely on the technical universities”, he added.
He told the graduands that the job market had moved beyond national frontiers into a global space and that the concept of a job life was no longer guaranteed.
“Instead, in preparing our young people for the life of work, we must provide them with the tools that they need to compete with their counterparts from other parts of the world.”
“Having hands on education on technology today is not enough to guarantee job success. The world of work needs experienced, competent and specialized individuals with the ability to learn quickly and understand sophisticated technologies”, he stated.
He continued: “There is, therefore, the need for both lecturers and administrators in the technical universities to acquire the needed knowledge in order to churn out graduates with the necessary skills to find and maintain jobs”.
The minister maintained that the task was attainable if technical universities stayed within their mandate and remained technical in terms of structures and programmes.
He then urged the TTU to work closely with the Ministry of Education and the National Council on Tertiary Education (NCTE) on all issues relating to the transition of the institution into a technical university.
800-Bed Capacity Hall
Earlier, the minister commissioned an 800-bed capacity hall christened ‘University Hall’ and inspected some ongoing projects on the campus.
He remarked that government was aware of the infrastructural needs of the country’s technical universities in the areas of workshops and laboratory equipment.
The Vice Chancellor of TTU, Rev Prof John Frank Eshun, asserted that TTU was poised to position itself as a preferred centre of technical education in the sub-region.
To this end, a five-year strategic plan was launched in 2006 to serve as a road map towards attaining the vision.
He mentioned that TTU was also making strides in the area of staff development and that about 150 staff members were granted study leave in the year under review.