UG launches $7m digitalisation project

The University of Ghana (UG) yesterday launched the Vice-Chancellor’s Programme For Enhancing The UG Student Experience Through Digitalisation.

The project estimated at $7million over a three-year period involves classroom modernisation, one student one laptop initiative  and the creation of Hot-spot Zones for fast internet connectivity.

 The Vice-Chancellor, Professor Nana Aba Appiah Amfo, speaking at the launch said despite UG being the premier University it has struggled to maintain classroom infrastructure due to the dependence on Government which has overburdened  the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFUND) on account of the many public universities.

She explained that the cap on student fees by Government of Ghana (GOG) also played a role in placing financial constraints on the University with regards to its ability to generating sufficient internally generated funds for such purposes.

The Vice-Chancellor indicated that the free Senior High School (SHS) has resulted in increased enrolment in the second cycle institutions and ultimately fed public tertiary institutions like the UG coupled with the emergence of COVID-19 that resulted in the shutdown hence the desire to adopt counter measures to facilitate teaching and learning.

“It is in the light of this that management has set for itself the task of expanding and modernising the classroom infrastructure via the fullest integration of technology,” she said.

 She said it was detected that most students do not have laptops at the height of the pandemic when  lectures were held on line as  such could not participate fully in virtual classes on line discussions and related academic activities.

Prof Amfo stated that four target groups of students including those not requiring financial aid, needy student, staff and faculty who would acquire on hire purchase and institutional purchases.

The Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Osei Adutum who launched the initiative said it would enhance education transformation at the university.

According to him, the installation of a digital environment and innovation would serve the larger students population geared towards fulfilling government’s agenda of digitalisation in all aspect of the economy towards an efficient technological system to transform and create an enabling environment to compete with the rest of the world.

The former president of ECOWAS Commission, Dr Mohammed Ibn Chambas commended the university council for the initiative which he said would go a long way to improve teaching and learning..

The chairperson of the university council, Justice Sophia A.B Akuffo (Rtd), who chaired the programme said the project when effectively utilised would promote research in all aspects of the academic tuitions of the university adding that the council was fully committed to the digitisation drive of the university and would lend support for its success.

PiBY LAWRENCE VOMAFA- AKPALU

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