Dr Kofi Koduah Sarpong, the Chief Executive Officer, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation, has advised graduates of the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA) to upgrade their digital knowledge to remain relevant in the labour market.
“We are in an era of digitization where automation, artificial intelligence and the use of software have dominated the delivery of accounting and financial services. Mundane and repetitive accounting and finance tasks are being replaced through artificial intelligence,” he said.
Dr Sarpong gave the advice on Thursday at the 13th congregation ceremony of the University during which 3,640 students graduated at postgraduate, undergraduate and Diploma levels in various disciplines.
He commended the University for launching the UPSA’s Enterprise and Innovative Centre to provide an avenue to mainstream entrepreneurship education and training.
That initiative, he said, aimed at fostering the spirit of entrepreneurship by unearthing, grooming, and supporting students to translate business ideas into viable businesses and urged other Universities to emulate such initiatives.
The CEO urged the graduates to acquire 21st-century skills and core competencies to enhance their employability and advancement in their careers.
“Industries now consider life skills such as creativity, innovation, critical thinking, collaboration, teamwork, communication, empathy, and digital literacy, among others, as essential skills for effective individual performance,” he said.
He urged the students to keenly monitor the developments of mobile money transactions and understand its implications, whether threats or opportunities and activate their creative and innovative thinking to unravel its impacts in the country.
Dr Sarpong charged the graduates to embark on Continuous Professional Development to maintain their membership and advance in certification and as well be abreast with current issues and be competitive in the world of market.
He urged the graduates to imbibe the values of honesty, humility, hard work, human relation, and humanity in their work practice to succeed as professionals.
“Human relation plays a key role in determining individual as well as corporate performance. Good human relation blurs the boundaries of diversity and binds employees together with a common purpose at the workplace,” he said.
Professor Abednego F.O. Amartey, the Vice-Chancellor, UPSA, said the University had collaborated with the Ghana Armed Forces to develop Finance and Accounting courses and programmes to meet the needs of the Forces.
The Professor said the University had matriculated over 30 National Security Master’s in Peace and Security programmes to equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge to provide analytical support to national leaders to guide decision making.
The University, he said, had received accreditation to roll out a Master of Science in Procurement Management and Master of Science in Pensions Management and look forward to receiving students in the 2021/2022 academic year.
He advised the graduates to work hard and excel in their fields of disciplines and also be ambassadors of the University by exhibiting the values and tenets they have imbibed throughout their studies.
“Be agents of change wherever you go by displaying high levels of integrity, discipline, professionalism and Godliness in all spheres of your endeavours to succeed in your chosen careers,” he added.
The University conferred an honorary Doctorate on Mr Frederick Boadu Asare, Group Manager of Village of Hope, a humanitarian project of the Church of Christ and Mr Patrick Nomo, the Chief Director, Ministry of Finance for their service to community and Alumni service respectively.