STATE OF THE UNIVERSITY ADDRESS 2017/2018 ACADEMIC YEAR
PROFESSOR N.N.N. NSOWAH-NUAMAH, THE PRESIDENT
ON THE OCCASION OF THE 12TH CONGREGATION OF REGENT UNIVERSITY COLLEGE OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY,
HELD ON THE FORECOURT ON SATURDAY, 8TH DECEMBER, 2018
Chancellor of Regent University College of Science and Technology
Minister for Science and Technology
Chairman and Members of the University Council
Vice Chancellors and representatives of affiliate institutions
VP (Academic Affairs)
Registrars of sister and affiliate institutions
Members of Convocation
Ladies and Gentlemen
I deem it a great honour to address the 12th Congregation of the Regent University College of Science and Technology. I wish to add my voice in welcoming you all to Regent.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, a congregation is convened, first to give the opportunity to the President to report on the state of the institution to its stakeholders and the people of Ghana in general. The President’s report of the 2017/2018 academic year, a detailed copy which has been uploaded on the University’s website, highlights major activities in the University since the last Congregation. It is our hope that our distinguished guests would find time to go through it in order to be informed about developments that have taken place over the year under review.
The other major event at a Congregation is the award of degrees and diplomas to our graduands who have successfully completed their various programmes of study at the University.
This Congregation, Mr. Chancellor, Ladies and Gentlemen, covers graduands who completed their studies here during the 2017/2018 academic year. At this ceremony, Regent is graduating 336 students made up of 132 females and 204 males and distributed as Faculty of Arts and Science (FAS) - 28, Faculty of Engineering and Allied Sciences (FECAS) - 101 and School of Business and Leadership (SBL) - 207. Of this number,
In addition, 4 postgraduate students who successfully completed the programme are to be awarded MSc Statistics certificate.
These graduands are young men and women who out of dint of hard work have distinguished themselves and therefore, must be crowned with success. We must share in the joy of their successes.
Mr. Chairman, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, I must mention that we are also honouring and celebrating the achievement of 12 participants who successfully completed the various non-tertiary programmes of the University and who are awarded certificates of attendance.
During the year under review, we recruited 9 Lecturers, three of whom are PhD holders to augment the teaching staff. Our aim is to recruit first class faculty members and early next year, we are going to embark on aggressive recruitment.
This year, four faculty members completed their PhD studies in various disciplines.
Two Senior Members were awarded scholarships to do PhD in United States and China respectively. This brings to the number of staff pursuing their PhD studies to 9. In addition, we have given scholarship to two staff members for Masters Programme in China. Locally, one staff member has been given scholarship to do his first degree.
New Programmes and Affiliations
The university has developed a number of new programmes and are affiliating most of the undergraduate and postgraduate degree ones to UCC and the HND Programmes to NABPTEX.
Post Graduate Programmes
Chancellor, as I indicated in my investiture speech that my vision was to make Regent a postgraduate institution, management has developed 14 Masters’ and 5 Doctoral programmes. The following programmes have been submitted to National Accreditation Board (NAB):
NAB officials have visited the university to look at the programmes. Their reports have been submitted and we have reviewed them. The University has resubmitted them to National Accreditation Board for final approval.
The following postgraduate programmes are with NAB but yet to be paid for or are yet to be submitted to NAB due to financial constraint:
10. MBA Marketing
11. MBA (Corporate Strategy)
12. Doctor Business Administration
13. PhD Development studies
14. PhD Business Management
All PhD/DBA programmes are by research with a duration of three years.
We still maintain membership of Council for Independent Universities (CIU) the umbrella organization for private universities in Ghana, International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education (IACBE) and Association of African Universities (AAU). We have almost concluded the processes for membership to The Association of African Business Schools (AABS).
Professor Stanley Moffatt in collaboration with a visiting Professor, Prof. Isaac Quaye have won a funding award of €150,000 to study on Molecular Epidemiology and Host Factor Analysis of Plasmodium Vivax Infection in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Awards and achievements
Our students have been performing well in various competitions.
The following were the major achievements of our teams:
ü With the feats achieved, the Regent Soccer team went into the records of PUSAG as the team to win the Gold trophy for a fourth consecutive time.
ü The Volley ball team, which has hitherto won only Bronze and Silver, has for the first time won Gold (Male category) and Silver (Female category)
ü Our Local PUSAG Co-ordinator (Mavis Boatemma Awuku) was awarded a Gold Medal as the best Local PUSAG coordinator
ü The Coach of our soccer team, who has coached the players consecutively for three years, was awarded the best Coach of the tournament.
We believe that these exceptional performances in competitions will entice prospective students to choose Regent for their further studies.
Academic Collaborations with Local Institutions
In our quest to forge greater collaboration with other research and academic institutions, both within and outside Ghana, the university has established academic collaboration with the following institutions:
A MOU has been signed with Living Faith Theological Seminary. Part of the Academic Block has been rented to that institution to run a theological school. It is expected that graduates from that school will be able to continue with their education at Regent University College of Science and Technology.
The University is collaborating with Pneuma College to undertake short courses. The first collaboration involved over eighty students. It is expected that more short courses will be run with this college to improve our financial situation and also enable some of these students continue in various programmes at the university.
MOUs have been signed with these institutions. It is expected that these collaboration will increase the student intake and improve the finances of the university.
Academic Collaborations with International Institutions
Quest International University, Perak (QIUP), Malaysia
The M.O.U with (QIUP) to undertake the PhD programme in Doctor in Business Administration and PhD in Business Management (Research) has been signed and documents have been sent to the National Accreditation Board for the programme accreditation.
BeM Management School, Dakar
The University received 13 students from the above University for a month exchange programme and internship. Students were very happy and three of the students are currently undertaking a semester course in the university. There will also be joint coordinated research projects, training of faculty and students and development of joint distance programme and exclusive education including languages in the very near future.
Visiting Professor Dr. Daniel Darko from the US was here to teach on the summer course in Theology.
The school recently received Dr. Thomas Mensah, a renowned inventor of Cyber Optics and other technologies. Dr. Thomas visited Regent University College of Science and Technology to speak to the students. He encouraged the University to take part in the forthcoming Drone Competition. He intends to establish Silicon Valley of Ghana, Regent University Chapter next year 2019 to train students in AI, Computer Security and other areas of Technology and innovations.
Corporate Social Responsibility
As part of its social responsibility, the university organized a free Information Technology course for prospective students and Senior High School Graduates. Through this programme seven students have enrolled to undertake various programmes in the University.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, it is our firm belief that we cannot leave out the alumni of Regent in our determination to develop this institution. We need to rejuvenate the alumni association. I wish to use this occasion to call on all alumni of Regent to respond to our call whenever they are invited to meetings of the Alumni Association. Even though you have left the institution, you still have a stake in its development. You have a lot to offer the institution and therefore, like the invitation to the Apostle Paul in the Bible, we say “come down to Macedonia and help us”
The University has ordered for alumni medals for our past students. We entreat all alumni to make sure they have laid hands on one.
PRESENTATION ON THE THEME
Before I conclude my speech, allow me to say a few words on the theme of the occasion, Strategic Policy Initiatives to Foster Vibrant Growth of Private Tertiary Education. The Chancellor has talked much about it and I believe the Guest Speaker will also dilate on the theme.
Private universities are major players in the tertiary educational system of the Country, providing jobs for many teaching and non- teaching staff, thus contributing directly to the reduction of unemployment in our country.
Chancellor, distinguished ladies and gentlemen, irrespective of our contributions to national development, private universities face threatening challenges.
The single crucial woe of the private universities is the affiliation system. We thank the Government of Ghana for working toward scrapping this system. This will be a major stride in tertiary reform. Really, this system, practiced in Ghana in its current form, is detrimental to the tertiary educational landscape. At the last congregation, I showed how this Affiliation system as required by law is expensive and time consuming, adding huge costs to the budget of private universities and sometimes delaying innovation and speed. Now I want to show how it is cumbersome and unproductive.
The two stage of programme assessment is cumbersome. At stage one, document of the new programme is submitted to the mentoring Institution with a fee of at least $1,000. The programme is reviewed according to the institution’s policy and is sent back to the mentee institution for necessary adjustment and correction to be effected. It is sent back to the mentoring institution for the final approval
At stage two, the approved document is sent to NAB for assessment. NAB then constitutes a panel of experts who are from other institutions to visit the institution to assess the programme. Ladies and gentlemen, this is where the problem starts. The acceptance of the programme depends on who the assessors are and which institution they are coming from. This panel of assessors now use what happens in their institutions to determine how the programme should be run. In most cases, they are quite the opposite of what the mentoring institution has indicated in the review of the programme.
Why should the accreditation process subject the private institutions to such condition. I suggest that NAB’s panel should look at other areas besides the content after a review by the mentoring institution or the document is sent to NAB which will constitute a panel that will include the mentoring institution so that the assessment is done ones.
The policy is that promotion documents are sent to the mentoring institutions who go through the process towards the promotion. This process is so slow that promotions are unduly delayed and one wonders whether it is deliberate or not. Our document has been with one university for four years now and still no information has come from them even after constant reminders. I suggest that private institutions should be allowed to go through the promotion process using, if we like, the criteria of the affiliate institution.
Graduation dates are based on the convenience of the mentoring university. Most of the academic calendar of the private universities are different from their mentoring institutions yet they are made to fit the graduation dates into the calendar of the mentoring institutions. Regent had to postpone this congregation because the academic board of one of our mentoring institutions had already met. I suggest that the mentoring institutions should conduct a special meeting to discuss the results of the mentee universities or they bring reps on our academic board meetings during the discussion of results.
Advice to Graduands
Graduands, I would like to congratulate you on your achievement. The four-year race from matriculation to graduation has now come to an end. The journey had not been easy and smooth for most of you. In fact, some could not complete the race for one reason or the other. For those of you who have, I say Ayekoo.
Chancellor, kindly permits me to share some thoughts with the graduands. Dear leavers, I am aware that what you are experiencing today is a dream-fulfilled. You should always remember that a lot of resources, both human and financial have been committed into your training. Therefore, I charge you to go out there and commit yourself to hard, dedicated and honest work to justify that huge investment made towards your training.
Also, do not forget that the world today belongs to people who challenge the status quo and determine to make a paradigm shift from the conventional ways of doing things for better. To be able to do this, certain personal resolutions are crucial.
First, be conscious of your time and ensure that it is used only on productive ventures. This is because as you know, time is a resource that cannot be replaced when lost. Therefore, use it judiciously.
Second, take advantage of the various opportunities offered by today’s changing world by looking round to identify these opportunities and use them to your advantage
Third, be mindful of the people you associate yourself with as they may have either positive or negative influence on your life. Always, be mindful of that popular adage that ‘bad association corrupts good morals’.
Finally, never forget your background but rather, be humbled by it and let your training have a positive reflection on you and all those you will be associated with.
Chancellor, Ladies and Gentlemen, I once again congratulate the graduands and wish the Lord’s blessing for their future endeavours.
Chancellor, in conclusion I will say that Regent University College of Science and Technology achieved much in the 2017/2018 Academic year but has also gone through a number of challenges. With the plans in place for new programmes to be added, new faculty that have joined and upgrade of existing faculty, the year ahead is bright. We hope to have partnerships with government, businesses and individuals to implement our business and academic ventures thereby continuing the pursuit of our vision to become a centre of excellence in raising highly skillful, visionary, God-fearing, ethical, passionate leaders, and critical thinkers to function as change-agents in their various spheres of life.
Long live Regent University College of Science and Technology!
Long live Ghana!
Thank you all for your rapt attention.
CHARGE FOR FRESH GRADUATES
My dear fresh-in-town graduates, let me congratulate you again on your academic achievements. You now have your certificates in various academic disciplines. You should, however, note that what knowledgeable employers look for in you is not the mere possession of the Bachelor or Diploma degree, but how you apply the courses you pursued; in fact, your diligence, discipline, maturity of judgment and the clarity of your thought would have to be demonstrated. Wherever you find yourselves, you have to prove to the world that the Regent graduate is a force to reckon with.
All of us wish you the greatest success in your legitimate pursuits. Our prayer and expectation is that you always conduct your private and professional affairs in a manner that will make you be perceived as responsible and respectful citizens. Go out as ambassadors of Regent. Go forth and Shine wherever you find yourselves transforming your world and making it better and better. Wherever you go, may the Good Lord always guide and bless you in all your endeavors.