Accra, April 8, GNA - The Methodist University College Ghana (MUCG) on Saturday held its third congregation with an appeal to government to demonstrate its commitment to supporting Private Universities by setting up the proposed National Research fund.
The Very Reverend Professor Samuel K. Adjepong, Principal of MUCG said the fund could be accessed competitively by academic staff of both state and private universities to enhance teaching and learning in the universities.
Speaking at the 3rd congregation of MUCG, Prof. Adjepong said the Ministry of Education had agreed in principle to the suggestion by the conference of Heads of Private Universities Ghana and "what is needed is to put this into reality".
In all, various degrees were conferred on 150 students who graduated in Bachelor of Business Administration and Bachelor of Science in Economics.
He also urged both government and the private sector enterprises to extend Post-graduate scholarships to the Private Universities on a competitive basis to encourage needy students to pursue further studies. "Secondly, the proposed new students loan scheme should be flexible with regard to the quantum of loan sum so that students in private tertiary institutions can borrow enough to pay their tuition fees and still have enough money to cover the cost of accommodation and subsistence," he said.
The Principal announced that the second satellite campus would soon be inaugurated at Wenchi to host the Faculty of Agriculture. The Faculty would run programmes in Agriculture, Agribusiness, Agro-processing and Horticulture at the Certificate, Diploma and Degree levels beginning September this year.
Prof. Adjepong said the first satellite campus was instituted at Tema to service workers at that place and its environs and the first batch of students was matriculated in January this year.
He said at the instance of the University, the Methodist Church would set up a special scholarship fund for students of MUCG. The fund would be fed largely from the subvention the university received from the church would be initially targeted at members of the church and/or their wards who qualified for admission at MUCG; he added and commended the church for its continuous assistance to the university.
He, therefore, urged the new graduands to use the knowledge and skills acquired to make a living, and to fit into life.
Mr. Kobina Quansah, Chairman of National Council for tertiary Institutions, said the time has come for the Tertiary Institutions in Ghana to move away from homogeneity where every institution seeks to do the same thing and all aspire to be a research university. "There is a strong case for a highly differentiated and diverse higher education system that is made up of various kinds and types of institutions that are congruent with the diversity of our socio-economic and educational needs and goals," he said.
He said, the production of thinking and committed graduates would not happen automatically, but would depend crucially on the reform and transformation of learning and teaching, and the curriculum. Most Rev. Dr Robert K. Aboagye-Mensah, the Presiding Bishop and Chairman of the Council of MUCG thanked all those whose efforts and support had brought the university that far.
He said since the last congregation students' population went up about 53 per cent and commended both teaching and non-teaching staff for their dedications and sacrifice.
Dr Aboagye-Mensah stressed the need for churches to take the lead in instilling discipline in the tertiary institutions. "Policymakers, School's Representative Council, Parents, Religious bodies and the society in general should join hands in the fight against indiscipline through prayers and counselling to instil good morals in our youths," he said.
He urged the graduands to leave above reproach and prove their worth at their workplaces and apply their training to solve problems that might confront them in future.
Prof. Kwesi Yankah, Acting Pro-Vice Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Legon urged them to be guided by the higher discipline acquired throughout their stay in the university.
Mr Atta Gyamfi, spokesman for the graduands, appealed to the government to amend the GETFUND Law to include private universities so that part of it could be used to provide accommodation for students.