‘Technical varsities should not behave like traditional ones’

The Deputy Director-General of the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission (GTEC),Dr Ahmed JinaporAbdulaihas said technical universities need not deviate from theircoremandate and behave liketraditional universities.

 “Technical universities are structured with focus on applying technology to various field of teaching and learning rather that the search of new knowledge.Our mode of operations is a structured curriculum aligned with industry needs.

Hence, it will not be worth the tax payers’ money to run programmes whose graduates are unemployable. Technical universities are unique in their own rights and suchuniqueness mustnot be corrupted.”

DrAbdulai made the statement atthe 6thgraduation ceremony (virtual edition)  ofTakoradiTechnical University (TTU) held in Takoradi on Saturday.

He stressed;“ In all  processes leading  to accreditation,our interest is whether institutions can ably demonstrate employability of their students as their primary  mission – we at GTEC believe technical universities  should be well positioned  to execute a more aggressive employable agenda shaped in strategic industry alignment.”

He noted that, the continual challenges facing the nation regarding employability of graduates had made it more demanding on technical universities to adhere to the principles of competent-based approach and also developing the needed skills of the graduates.

According to DrAbdulai, GTEC permitted technical universities to run M-Tech programmes with a caution that they must demonstrate capacity and also evidence of under-graduateprogrammes.

Yet, the commission, he said, had been inundated with countless application deviating fromwhat has been prescribed, he stated.

Applauding TTU for an outstanding performance, he reported  that, a study conducted by International Finance Corporation(IFC) of the World Bank Group, ranked the university the best for having a structured approach curriculum review through department advisory board madeup of industryand faculty members,  indicating a high industry experience and strong partnership.

DrAbdulaisaid; “Interestingly,TTUwas the only institution as at the IFC study to report tracer data demonstrating commitment to  programme relevance accountability and evidenced based decision making.

TTU deserve huge applause, management,  staff and faculty need commendation, Vice Chancellor, GTEC is proud of your sterling leadership. We need to do more.”

“The place and role of technical, vocation and skill base training is more telling in our current socio-economic  and political discourse relative to educational curriculum and its place in propelling job creation  in the country.

We have always held the  position that the  coming  into being  of technical university education if not the panacea to addressing the unemployment  situation, it should at least slow  it down,” he noted.

Arguing that  the public sector was choked, the Western Regional Minister,MrKwabenaOkyereDarko-Mensah, for his part, believed that technical universities like TTU must   produce graduates   gifted with  innovative skills to become entrepreneurs,  who would  growthe business and  the economy of the country, stressing “ you must be part of the solution to meet the needs of the next generation.”

He said “Ghana needs goods and service and TTU should t be in the forefront to change the fortunes of this country. Industry and the academia should go into research, curriculum design and hands-on training. Partnership is key all over the world.”

FROM CLEMENT ADZEI BOYE, TAKORADI

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