PRESIDENT’S REPORT TO 7TH CONGREGATION CEREMONY
SALUTATION: Distinguish Ladies and Gentlemen,
WELCOME AND GREETINGS
I count myself privileged by the grace of God, as I have done over the years, in sharing the joy and pride of parents, guardians, relatives and beloved friends who gather as it is happening today, to witness their dear ones graduate after years of study.
And it is in the spirit of that privilege and on behalf of Management, staff and the student body of Ghana Baptist University College (GBUC), that I welcome you all to our 7th Graduation ceremony. We are indeed very grateful and count ourselves very much honoured; that you chose among many other concerns competing for your time, to rather be with us today. Thank you and once again, welcome.
We are gathered here, Professor Vice Chancellor, Chairman of Council and distinguished guests, to graduate……… students who have completed their programmes in various disciplines of study including Theology, Business Administration and Church Music, and who have fulfilled all prerequisites for the award of degrees and diplomas. Details of the awards for all the divisions can be found in the graduation booklet provided. Please allow me at this stage to invite you all to join me in congratulating the GBUC Class of 2015 on their achievements; while extending same to a crop of committed and hardworking faculty and non teaching staff, through whose untiring efforts students are taught and mentored. To them also we say bravo!
Prof. Vice Chancellor, this is an occasion on which we are obliged to bring a report on our activities and progress over the last year. I will therefore with permission like to attempt to give a summary of the details in the GBUC 2014/15 Annual Report. In pursuant of its vision, GBUC continues to emphasize the training and equipping of graduates not only for academic excellence but also as skilled and dedicated men and women of integrity capable of making godly impact on society wherever they may be.
To make aspirations become a reality, there has been the need to continually improve teaching and learning, upgrading infrastructure, improving quality of staff as well as deepening the Christian faith practice within the GBUC community.
NEW SCHOOLS AND PROGRAMMES
Prof. Vice Chancellor, Council Chairman, Ladies and gentlemen, I mentioned in my last year’s report, the approval of two new programmes; Bachelor of Education in English (B.Ed. -English) and Diploma of Education in English (Dip. Ed- English) by the National Accreditation Board (NAB), and which gave us the basis then, to start the third School of the institution even while we awaited approval of more programmes to be added.
I have the pleasure to report that, indeed more of the accredited programmes have been added since then, and the third School of Art and Social Sciences Education (SASSE) has taken off this academic year. The other programmes being offered in addition to the two already mentioned are; Bachelor of Education in French (B.Ed-French); Diploma of Education in French (Dip.Edu-French) and Bachelor of Education in Religious Studies (B.Ed.-Rel. Stds).
Another good news is that, the long awaited Nursing programme has now received the NAB’s accreditation. The Nurses and Midwifery Council has already inspected our excellent facilities, and we hopefully await their green light anytime soon to launch the much awaited fourth School of Nursing.
OTHERS – It is also important to report on the academic programmes, new and not so new, that are either being streamlined, or to be brought on stream soon. They include a new Masters in Information Systems degree programme that has just received NAB accreditation. The Master of Art in Ministry programme that was briefly put on hold at the STM, has its affiliation transferred from the Akrofi Christaller Institute to our mentor University, the UCC. We are grateful to the VC and Department of Religion of UCC for the favour. It is hoped that in streamlining the affiliation issue, the MA in Ministry programme will no longer have any cause to look back from making the necessary impact that has eluded it for some time.
GBUC has also reached far in discussions with two Universities in the United Kingdom (UK) on collaborations towards the introduction of two new programmes to complement that of the Nursing School. The first is the Oxford Brookes University, UK, who are due to visit GBUC early next semester to likely conclude on the launching of the Diploma in Higher Education in Palliative Care (Dip HE-Palliative Care). Second is Manchester Metropolitan University, UK, for collaboration in short courses in the areas of Food Safety and Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) to be hosted by GBUC. It is hoped that the introduction of these programmes to supplement the activities of both the Nursing School and the College Clinic will go a long way to enhance the institution’s contributions to the health needs of the local community and country at large.
STAFF – I am happy to report that GBUC engaged a number of full-time competent staff to strengthen the academic faculty as well as in management. And these efforts are in line with our vision, which is, as GBUC grows and its programmes base expands, high caliber academic and non-academic staff with the requisite academic and professional qualifications will continue to be attracted and recruited to reinforce the existing team.
ACADEMIC SEMINARS – One activity that gained much prominence during the year was the organization of academic seminars in both Schools of Administration and Theology and Ministry. The exercise which used to be held only intermittently, became a regular exercise on the academic calendar; and has no doubt helped to inspire and deepen research among faculty to benefit teaching and learning. The involvement of students, the ultimate beneficiaries of the exercise has reportedly been quite exciting; and I will like to commend the Deans of the Schools for the initiative and encourage its sustainability.
INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT – On infrastructural development, Prof. Vice Chancellor, Council Chairman, distinguished guests, I mentioned in my last year’s report that the Clinic that was under construction at the Abuakwa was then 95% complete. The facility has now been completed, and currently documentation for registration being processed to enable it start operation any time from now.
CITY CAMPUS COURTYARD – The city campus inner courtyard has also been given a facelift through bitumen resurfacing which has helped not only in the elimination of what used to be waterlogged and muddy scenes during rainfall, but has also greatly enhanced the image of the campus.
PROPOSED BUSINESS CENTRE COMPLEX – Management did also reach a negotiated agreement approved by Council, with a Baptist businessman to undertake on the Abuakwa campus, the construction of a business centre complex on a Build, Operate and Turnover (BOT) concept. The centre will comprise of banking spaces, variable shops and a cafeteria. The signing of the agreement for the project to commence will take place in a few days time. It is expected that the completion of the project will greatly enhance community life on the Abuakwa campus and its environs.
REVAMPED WEBSITE – Finally, it is a pleasure to report what many others may have already visited and noticed; the revamped website of the University College. What we have now at www.gbuc.edu.gh, is a much improved site over what used to be the drab, unexciting and almost dormant site of old. All can now be assured of an exciting, quick and much more communicative site in dealing with GBUC.
CHURCH AND SPIRITUALITY – Under the leadership of the Chaplaincy Board, church services on both campuses continue to receive increased patronage. Being an evangelical Christian institution, uplifting spiritual activities were deliberately organized to help the GBUC community with opportunities for personal meaningful reflection and assessment of their spiritual lives. In line with this, there were organized staff retreat and ‘Spiritual Emphasis Week’ programmes with inputs from outside speakers on the themes for the benefit of the GBUC community.
GRADUATING CLASS – And now to the graduating class, this is the day you have been waiting for; the day the Lord has made for you, and you deserve to rejoice in it. After the toil of lecture attendances, anxieties over examinations and assignments which at times you may have thought were never going to end, now here you are! And on behalf of the whole GBUC community and on my own behalf, I congratulate you on your laudable achievements.
It is the fervent hope of all of us that this day marks the beginning of the great heights you are destined individually by the good God to achieve both in your educational careers as well as in your life visions. It is our prayer that you will go out there into the world with the confidence of what you have been equipped, to make the expected impact on society under the guidance and protection of the Almighty God Himself.
Allow me to use the opportunity to appeal to you, to seek to apply yourself in whatever capacity you find yourself anywhere, with diligence and a sense of personal integrity as true ambassadors of GBUC. May the good God lead you always in all your future endeavours, congratulations!
Thank you all for the attention.