Dr Fred Kyei Asamoah, the Executive Director of the Council for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (COTVET) has challenged graduates to inculcate in them entrepreneurial and innovative ideas to help develop their communities.
Dr Asamoah was addressing the 7th Congregation of the Bolgatanga Polytechnic where 299 students were prepared for graduation at a colourful ceremony at Sumburungu near Bolgatanga.
Out of the number, 112 were females and 187 males. 26 graduated with Bachelor of Technology from affiliate arrangement from the Kumasi Technical University, while 38 graduated with First Class Division. 141 second had Class Upper Division, 104 Second Class Lower Division, 10 graduated with pass and six came out as “competent” in various disciplines.
Dr Asamoah urged the students not to be complacent after graduation because the exigencies of life had just begun.
He said the world had already started using “industry 4.0” and most jobs today would not exist after five years, and entreated the graduates to seek and acquire more skills that would make them competitive and relevant. “Remember that hard work, perseverance and dedication are the surest ways to success in life. As you leave the Polytechnic into the realities of life, remember that society which invested so much in you would expect returns from you,” he added.
Dr Asamoah indicated that society would measure not only the way the graduates assist their respective communities to identify solutions to their problems, but the quality of their solution and the role they played to better the lives of their people.
Professor Samuel Erasmus Alnaa, Rector of the Bolgatanga Polytechnic, said the Polytechnic was poised to run Bachelor of Technology programmes in the Business School of the Polytechnic.
He disclosed that the National Accreditation Board (NAB) would visit the institution to assess their preparedness to run Bachelor of Technology programmes in Computerized Accounting, Bachelor of Technology in Marketing, Bachelor of Secretarial studies and Management Studies, and Bachelor of Technology in Procurement and Management Studies.
The Rector predicted high enrolment and said with the introduction of the free Senior High School (SHS) policy by government, with its associated high enrolment which resulted in the double tract system, it was envisaged that the number of students who would be churned out from SHS to seek higher level education including Polytechnic and Technical University education would rise astronomically.
Professor Alnaa said it was imperative that the Polytechnic run variety of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) programmes for prospective students to choose from, “I humbly wish to implore both the National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) and the NAB to speed up the processes of accreditation to enable us run these programmes.”
Madam Paulina Patience Abayege, the Upper East Regional Minister charged the graduates to raise the bar of excellence and to be team players wherever they found themselves, and admonished them to go into remote corners of the country to inspire and motivate the people there.
She said government would continue to invest in education, including tertiary education as an essential component of sustainable national development. “However, we must acknowledge that this is a shared and collective responsibility.”
She said the Polytechnic, civil society, the private sector and individual members of communities must all play their part, adding that government was working to ensure that the teaming youth were engaged, as several of its initiatives including the Nation Builders’ Corp (NABCO) were rolled out to contain the graduate unemployment situation in the country.
Miss Benedicta Efua Dewu was adjudged the overall best student. She received a citation in her honour.