PRESIDENT’S REPORT, 2016
Chancellor, Rev Dr Ernest Adu-Gyamfi, Pro-Vost UCC, Chairperson of Council, Professor Kwame Wiredu and Members of Council, Vice Chancellors and leadership from sister Universities, Nananom, Members of the Executive Management and Deans, Colleagues from the Academic, Professional and support sectors, The Student Representative Council, Students, family and friends, Median houses present, Ladies and Gentlemen.
Introduction and Welcome
It is a great honour and pleasure to warmly welcome you all to our 8th Graduation Ceremony. On behalf of the Governing Council, Executive Management Committee, teaching and non-teaching staff, and the entire student body of the University College, I thank you for honouring our invitation to grace this ceremony with your distinguished presence.
Statistics and Graduating Class
Professor Vice-Chancellor, Chairman of Council and distinguished guests, we are graduating a total of 487 students comprising 250 (51%) males and 237 females (49%) from the Schools of Theology and Ministry and Business Administration. There are 371 (76%) students graduating with Bachelor degrees: there are 37 (10%) students who are graduating with First Class degrees, 148 (40%) graduating with Second Class (Upper Division), 142 (38%) students who are graduating with Second Class (Lower Division) degrees, as well as 41 (11%) students who are graduating with Third Class. The remaining 3 (1%) students had Pass.
The remaining 116 (24%) are students graduating with Diplomas: there are 22 (19%) students who are graduating with Second Class (Upper Division), 73 (63%) students graduating with Second Class (Lower Division), as well as 21 (18%) students who are graduating with Pass.
Research and Publications
In our effort to become a research University, our lecturers have been engaged in periodic seminars to present papers on various academic areas. In order to encourage research and publication, a research fund has been established, which appears in the 2016/17 academic year budget. In addition to articles published by lecturers, a lecturer, Mr Edward Owusu, has just published a book, Modern Business Communication. To boost research and publication, the University College is in the process of collaborating with Professor John Marangos in the USA, a research expert, to hold research seminars and workshops at GBUC.
School of Nursing
Professor Vice-Chancellor and Council Chair, I am glad to report that this semester saw the operation of the School of Nursing. We currently offer BSc in Nursing. We hope to begin Diplomas in Nursing and Midwifery very soon. Many Ghanaians think they cannot get jobs in hospitals after training at private institutions. But, Professor Vice-Chancellor, with the rapid development and opening of Medical Centres by the Ghana Baptist Convention, under Christian Health Association of Ghana (CHAG), the University College is in close working relationship with the Baptist Health Council to offer jobs to our graduates after their training.
Faculty and Staff Development
Professor Vice-Chancellor and Council Chair, there has been much human resource development among our faculty and non-teaching staff in terms of academic pursuance. I am proud and glad to report that at the School of Business Administration, one of our lecturers has obtained his PhD; I will like to take the opportunity to congratulate Dr George Tweneboah for this great achievement. In addition, there are five full-time lecturers and four lecturers at the School of Business Administration and School of Theology and ministry respectively currently pursuing their PhD in various institutions. At the Central Administration, Mr Mark Sakyi, the Internal Auditor, just graduated from the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science of Technology with MSc. There are other two administrative staff pursuing their Masters programmes.
I am happy to announce that by the grace of God the University College’s Medical Centre at Abuakwa is in full operation. Currently it has 21 full-time staff including a medical doctor, optometrist, pharmacist, midwives, community health nurses, a public health nurse, enrolled nurse and health care assistants. The centre is under the Baptist Medical Council and managed by the Baptist Health Services. The centre is now accredited by CHAG.
Expansion work is ongoing at the Medical Centre, to be completed very soon. This block comprises of Maternity and Theater. Construction of Business Centre at the Abuakwa Campus has started. When completed, anytime next year, the facility will comprise of Banking Halls, Cafeteria, Shopping Mall, Laundry, etc.
Professor Vice-Chancellor, GBUC is in full move toward collaboration with tertiary institutions outside the shores of Ghana. On Wednesday, 5 October 2016, a meeting with Prof Dr Werner Kahl of Academy of Mission at the University of Hamburg was held at Golden Tulip in Accra as a follow-up to our earlier communication on collaboration. The meeting was fruitful. Prof Kahl would be a Visiting Professor of GBUC. Another meeting with Professor Kahl is scheduled to take place in Hamburg in December 2016, where he will lead talks on collaboration with other German universities.
The Head of Strategic Partnership of ABE from the UK, Mr Munir Lone, paid the University College a visit on Wednesday, 12 October 2016. ABE has selected GBUC as partner institution and will set up a centre here to offer UK courses at Diploma, Bachelors, Masters and Postgraduate Diploma levels in Ghana.
Oxford Brookes University in the UK is still interested in setting up Palliative Care programme at our School of Nursing. They are planning a visit anytime soon.
Talks with Morehouse College in Atlanta, Georgia, in the USA, is far advanced. A professor from the College is due to visit GBUC next year to teach a course in the MA in Ministry programme.
As per our motto, the University College seeks to train men and women to be resourceful to lead our families, communities, churches and nation in excellence. Based on this, the University College has put into place a monthly “President Lectures”. These lectures are to serve as mentoring platform to educate students on the realities of life, equip them to grapple with life situations and help them to be successful in life. The first lecture was delivered in October under the theme, “Planning: A Major Key to Success.”
Links with Industry
Tertiary education is meant to help solve problems of society; hence the important role of research. Heads of Departments have been charged to link up with industries to find out their problems for the University College to write proposals and embark on intensive research to find possible solutions. This initiative will drive lecturers into research, which will enhance teaching and learning, and make the University a research University; it will also serve as the University’s contribution to community development, and at the end open job opportunities for GBUC graduates.
The University College has been able to seek membership with the International Association of Baptist Colleges and Universities (IABCU). This will put the University College in a good position to link up with other member Colleges and Universities in the world.
Visits to Graduates’ Workplaces
GBUC wants to see its motto, “Excellence in Leadership and Stewardship”, in the lives of its graduates. Plans are under way to visit our past students in their workplaces to know their challenges and successes. This will inform the University College in its future plans in terms of methods of delivery and restructuring of courses. It will also strengthen the bond between the University College and its students, which will in the end strengthen our Alumni.
Word to Graduands
And now to the graduands, we celebrate this joyful day with you. You have worked hard to deserve diplomas and degrees in your various disciplines. I will however warn you the acquisition of a diploma or degree does not guarantee a job offer. Tertiary education is not just for a job; it rather prepares you to think hard to create things for yourself and society. Instead of looking and praying for non-existing jobs, I will entreat you to start something new. Some of you may have to think about taking volunteering jobs to acquire additional skills and be exposed to situations to prepare you for future jobs. Let me remind you that wherever you may find yourselves and whatever you find your hands on, display excellence.
In conclusion, Professor Vice-Chancellor, we are grateful to God for the past and will continue to trust Him for the future. We believe, in spite of the many challenges, the future of this University College is very bright. We humbly, therefore, plead with the Ghana Baptist Convention for its support, and invite Friends, Alumni, benefactors home and abroad to lend us the necessary support to enable us attain full University status in the very near future, by the grace and strength of God.
May I finally entreat you to pray toward the coming presidential and parliamentary election and to comport ourselves for a free, fair and peaceful elections. I wish you Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year. Long Live GBUC, Long Live Ghana. Thank you and God bless you.