A former Pro-Vice Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast (UCC), Prof. Kobina Yankson, has underscored the need for government to create a higher education commission that will combine the functions of the National Council for Tertiary Education (NCTE) and National Accreditation Board (NAB) under one umbrella.
He said the setting up of the commission would provide the better focus and synergy required for enhanced development of higher education in Ghana.
“It will also save cost and thereby reduce the current exorbitant charges imposed on institutions of higher education by NAB”, he added.
Prof. Yankson was speaking at a Roundtable discussion on the theme: “Higher Education Traditions, Challenges, Perspectives from Ghana and Germany” in Cape Coast.
He charged stakeholders to periodically undertake a comprehensive human resource needs assessment of the nation to guide enrolment in institutions of higher education.
“This would facilitate rapid socioeconomic development in this era driven by science and technology”, he added.
He said this would help in producing the critical mass of scientist and technologist necessary to support rapid socio-economic development.
Commenting on the need for government to actualise its industrialisation agenda for universities, Prof. Yankson said it would help to explore a healthy university industry relationship, reduce the financial burden on both staff and students and promote quality higher education.
He urged institutions of higher education to effectively quantify teaching, extensions and sourcing for funds and make them count in the promotion of academic staff.
This, he said, would enhance enthusiasm and create healthy academic environment.
Prof. Yankson said the capacity to provide the requisite human resource base for rapid development in Ghana could be achieved, if the persisting challenges were addressed.
He said higher education in Ghana had expanded and diversified from a modest beginning in the late 1940s, adding that it had, to a large extent, provided the needed support for the socio-economic development of the nation.
The Director of the Centre for International Education, University of Cape Coast (UCC), Prof. Rosemond Boohene, called for industry-academia mobilisation, not only in terms of cash, but with the industries sponsoring research or providing tools that would make teaching and learning effective.
An Educational Researcher from the Berlin Centre for Higher Education, Dr Bjorn Kiehne, said globalisation had brought some dynamics which enabled countries to relate with one another.
“If we want to be successful in future, we have to shape, broaden our identity”, he added.