Professor Kwadwo Adinkrah-Appiah, Vice-Chancellor, Sunyani Technical University, says retooling of Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) institutions will enable them contribute meaningfully to the acceleration of Ghana’s socio-economic development.

He said for the country to attain the 70 per cent tertiary education admission target for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and 30 per cent for the humanities, there is the need for the creation of incentives to attract youth into skills programmes.

Prof Adinkrah-Appiah made the call on Wednesday in his presentation during a panel discussion at the ongoing 71st Annual New Year School and Conference on the theme: “Attaining Ghana Beyond Aid (GhaBA): Prospects and Challenges.”
The 71st Annual New Year School and Conference is being organised by the School of Continuing and Distance Education, University of Ghana.

The Annual New Year School and Conference was introduced in 1948 and it brings together people from all walks of life to deliberate on topical issues of national and international interest.

Speaking on the topic “Ghana Beyond Aid: Human Capital Development, Research and Innovation”, Prof Adinkrah-Appiah called for the strengthening of the TVET reforms and the implementation of fully National Training and Vocational Qualifications Framework (NTVTQF).

“There should be a deliberate policy that prepares the youth into science and technology programmes,” he said.
He also suggested the development of strategies to attract industry to help train students in skills development; for example special tax rebates for industries that accept students for internships.

In addition, Prof Adinkrah-Appiah advocated for the inclusion of entrepreneurship training to skills development.
He urged government, industry and management of tertiary institutions to provide funding for universities and research institutions to do innovative research for start-ups and commercialisation of new products.

The Vice Chancellor also called for the building of stronger linkages between universities and industry for joint research and uptake of research findings.

He further proposed the setting up of Regional Business Incubation Centres for Universities/Industries to develop new products.

“Let’s have a positive mindset change towards made in Ghana products and expertise,” he said.

Mrs Titi Yakubu, Chief Executive Officer, Development Exchange Centre, Nigeria, in her presentation noted that innovation and technology application were key for turning around the fortunes of every organisation.

Prof George Oduro, former Pro-Vice Chancellor, University of Cape Coast, who chaired the function said quality education was a requisite for attaining the GhaBA agenda of the Government.

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