The Bono Regional Minister, Justina Owusu Banahene, has challenged products of Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions to learn to set up their own businesses to help curb the rate of unemployment in the country.
She said by virtue of the fact that students in TVET institutions acquire employable skills and professional training, they are expected to be job creators and not job seekers.
“Purpose in your heart that you can make it and become one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the country in future and gradually, you will get there by the grace of God”, she said.
The Regional Minister was addressing the 15th Congregation of the Sunyani Technical University in Sunyani over the weekend.
A total of 2,286 graduands were awarded Bachelor of Technology (B-Tech) degrees, Higher National Diploma (HND) and other non-tertiary Diploma Certificates in Engineering, TVET, Applied Science and Technology, Built Environment and Applied Art, as well as Business and Management Studies.
Out of the graduating list, 1,499, representing 65.6%, are males, whilst 787, representing, 34.4% are females. In terms of distribution according to classes, 305 (13.3%) obtained First Class, 1,288 (56.3%) obtained Second Class Upper Division, 665 (29.1%) obtained Second Class Lower Division and 28 (1.3%) obtained a Pass.
The Regional Minister reiterated that TVET is aimed at building students to be innovative and start up their own businesses to contribute significantly to the socio-economic development of this country without having to depend on the government for employment.
“As graduates of this august technical university, you are required to come out with business ideas and plans, and seek the needed support that would enable you to establish your own businesses. Even if you encounter challenges on your way, do not give up, keep pushing forward and tell yourself that you shall make it. In fact, that is the essence of TVET”, she said.
In his address to Convocation, the Vice-Chancellor, Ing. Prof. Kwadwo Adinkrah-Appiah said in line with the University’s Strategic Plan, Management is currently pursuing an aggressive staff development plan which will dramatically improve the faculty qualifications by the end of 2025.
To this end, the University is spending some GH¢1.5 million from its IGF sources to sponsor more than 50 staff to pursue PhD degrees in both local and foreign Universities.
“Also, more scholarship opportunities are being sought by Management to assist other Staff to pursue their PhD degrees in some foreign countries. The prospects are that, by the end of the current Strategic Plan period, 2025, the University would have trained over 100 PhD holders to manage teaching and learning in the Lecture Halls”, the Vice-Chancellor added.
To the graduands, the VC asked them to be worthy ambassadors of the Sunyani Technical University “as you join the Alumni Association today. As an institution that has trained and made you who you are today, remember to contribute regularly, at least once a year, to the STU Endowment Fund.”
Ing. Dr. Kwame A. Boakye, Chairman, Sunyani Technical University Council used the occasion to rally more support toward the STU Endowment Fund.
The Fund, he explained, is intended to build a platform that helps to support, sustain and extend the 55 years of progress and achievement in TVET and Engineering Education.
Some deserving students were recognised for their exceptional academic performances. The Overall Best Student Award went to Mercy Musah, who took home cash of GHS1,000.00 and a citation.
The Best Engineering Student Award went to Gbeddy Delight, who took home a plaque and a cheque for GHS3,000.00 from Kasapreko Company Limited and a cash of GHS500.00 from the University.
One of the female graduands presented a portrait of the Regional Minister to her for being an inspiration to her success story.