The Sunyani Technical University (STU) has awarded degrees, diplomas and certificates at its 14th graduation ceremony to 1,799 students who completed their programmes of study in the 2020/2021 academic year.
They comprised 1,107 males and 672 females who pursued programmes in Building and Technology, Engineering, TVET, Applied Science and Technology, Applied Arts, as well as Business and Management Studies disciplines.
Addressing the congregation in Sunyani, Professor Kwadwo Adinkrah-Appiah, the Vice- Chancellor (VC) said the University would run its first Master of Technology (MTech) programme very soon.
Other academic programmes currently being run by the University include 16 four year B-Tech, 10 two-year top-up B-Tech and 20 Higher National Diploma (HND) and four diploma programmes.
Currently, Prof. Adinkrah-Appiah said the staff population stood at 640 with a student population of 6,796, saying its faculty strength stood at 240, comprising four Associate Professors, 24 senior lecturers (PhD), 33 Senior Lecturers (Non-PhD), 11 Lecturers (PhD), 105 lecturers (Non-PhD), and 63 Assistant Lecturers.
He expressed appreciation to the government for the Financial Clearance granted to the University last year that enabled it to recruit 144 new staff and faculty.
But he said the current Faculty strength implies that the Faculty-Student ratio of the University stood at 1:28, which is inadequate regarding the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission requirements.
Prof Adinkrah-Appiah appealed to the government to grant a new Financial Clearance for the University to recruit more Faculties to improve the existing student-teacher ratio.
He said the University was still pursuing its staff development programmes rigorously, saying currently more than 40 staff were being sponsored to obtain higher degrees, especially terminal degrees (PhD), through its internally-generated fund and the Ghana Education Trust Fund staff development allocations in both local and foreign universities.
The University has existing collaborations with some local and foreign universities in areas such as staff and faculty capacity building, student exchange and collaborative research.
They include the UMES in the USA, University of Applied Sciences, Dortmund in Germany, Manipal Academy of Higher Education (MAHE) in India, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology and the University of Energy and Natural Resources, Prof. Adinkrah said.
He expressed discomfort about the rate at which individuals and estate developers had encroached and built unauthorized structures on the University’s land, saying the institution was working in collaboration with the Sunyani Municipal Assembly to demolish all unauthorized structures.
In a speech read on his behalf, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, the Minister of Education commended the Council, Management and the entire staff for their hard work towards the growth and development of the University, saying, the government was determined to transform the TVET sector through strategic investment and recognition.
He said the government had over the past five years been pursuing reforms in the nation’s education system to equip learners with 21st century skills required to participate fully in the industrial revolution.
“At the heart of these reforms has been the emphasis on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM)”, Dr. Adutwum indicated.