Focus On Technical Education — Ablakwa

1The Deputy Minister of Education, Samuel Okudzeto-Ablakwa, has urged polythenic institutions to focus on technical education that would create entrepreneurial skills to meet the needs of the labour market.

“Given the nature of technical advancement in the world, polytechnics must emphasise the acquisition of hands-on practical and entrepreneurial skills to produce their own jobs” he said.

He said the rationale of Polytechnic education is to produce the critical core of the technical manpower for the country hence the need for it to be given a critical attention.

Mr. Okudzeto-Ablakwa said this on Thursday when the Accra Polytechnic held its maiden three-day Exhibition and Poster Conference in Accra.

The conference sought to showcase the research output, creativity, innovations and inventions made by the Polytechnic’s Faculty members and students over the years.

Speaking on the theme “Polytechnic Education: The catalyst for Ghana’s Industrial Development” he said there was the need for teachers to teach the students how to create employment and not depend on government for non-existent jobs.

“Polytechnics have what its takes to impart knowledge as well as nurture younger generations in their intellectual, physical, moral, social, economic and technical development that would resolve market demands”, he stated.

However he pleaded with members of Polythenic Teachers Association and University Teachers Association not to go on strike on their research allowances as government was working hard to resolve the issue as agreed.

The Deputy Minister pledged government’s commitments to making polytechnics in the country technical universities where they would be given the needed support to meet international standards.

The Rector of the polytechnic, Mr. Sylvester Achio said the Polytechnic Law (ACT 745) requires them to show innovation and undertake applied research as a second major mandate to make them remain relevant to their immediate communities and the country as a whole.

He said due to this, the Polytechnic instituted research bursaries and awards at the various levels for staff who demonstrate the right level of critical thinking to enhance their research skills to meet the competitive academic community.

According to him, the Polythenic has signed a performance contract with the Ministry of Education under which they hope to generate about 50 per cent of its total budget requirements from internally generated funds.

He said the exhibition was to display the variety of products from the 15 academic departments to show to the world what technical competency could do to the nation’s development.

Mr. Edmund Ameko, Head of Exhibition Planning Committee appealed to the government to support the projects to engage in mass production to create more jobs for the youth. - Collins Boateng

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