From little things to big things. That is the success story of KAAF University College, which is situated at Buduburam, near Kasoa in the Central Region.
The university started on a small scale in 2007 with 14 students when it was given institutional accreditation. In 2010, after receiving its programmes accreditation, it soared.
Over the past three years, the university has grown in leaps and bounds and today it has more than 500 students and hopes to increase its intake to 1000 students this academic year.
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KAAF University College is the first private university in Ghana accredited by the National Accreditation Board to run degree programmes in: Civil Engineering Construction Technology and Geomatic (Geodetic) Engineering and BSc. Mechanical Engineering.
There are also programmes leading to the award of Bachelor of Science (BSc) degree in Business Administration with options in Banking and Finance, Accounting, Human Resource Management, Insurance, Marketing and Entrepreneurship.
It is affiliated to the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and the main campus is at Buduburam.
It has recently acquired a 34-acre land at Gomoa Fetteh Kakraba, also in the Central Region and three kilometres away from its current location, for its future and modern campus.
It has also recently acquired premises at the Premier Towers in Accra, at the Ministries, to run evening and weekend programmes, as well as top-ups for diploma holders, workers and students in the area.
According to Mr Michael Aidoo, the founder of KAAF University College, a number of factors prompted him to set up the university college.
A road contractor with many years’ experience, he said, “I realised after working with various engineers that there were Higher National Diploma (HND) graduates who sometimes were being discriminated against in terms of remuneration because they did not possess degrees. The desire was to help such HND holders to obtain the necessary engineering degrees in order to improve their performance and to improve upon their earnings”.
Mr Aidoo, who is also the President of the Progressive Road Contractors Association, one of the two road contractors associations in the country, says, “I hope to help increase the number of engineers in the country as my contribution to the growth and development of the country. We contractors especially need quality engineers,” he said.
Mr Aidoo, who hails from Sefwi Awaso, had hoped to establish the college in a rural setting but he later decided to establish it at Kasoa, near Accra because there were institutions and organisations in the metropolitan area that had laboratories which could be accessible to the students of the university.
“We have tried in our small way to encourage more people, especially those from the rural areas, to undertake tertiary education. We have given out some scholarships to needy students and hope to provide more assistance.”
Kaaf University College aims to fill the vacuum with the provision of quality tertiary education to produce competent and confident graduates in the areas of Engineering and Business Administration. The university is expected to blaze a new trail by effectively combining academic studies with field or practical training. It hopes to produce graduates who are practically-oriented without sacrificing academic and scholastic excellence. It will engage in teaching and research with a lot of emphasis on extension work.
It would prepare graduates to establish careers in their chosen areas of specialisation and through its problem-based teaching and extension services, train practitioners who would be prepared to go to the field and apply theory to practice.
Dr Dennis Mike Obeng, rector of the college, who holds a doctorate in mechanical engineering, says the college is determined to produce tomorrow’s dedicated engineers imbued with all the technological advancement.
In 2010, the college acquired the plot of land at Gomoa Fetteh, as the site for the permanent campus. Work has already started on a number of structures, including hostels and an administration block.
Dr Obeng said: “We intend to build other structures and make the college one of the best in the country. We have put in place structures to enhance learning. We hope to increase our intake considerably by readying ourselves for the double intake this year.”
The Adinkra symbol in the logo of the university stands for the truism that knowledge obliterates ignorance.
It is hoped that the presence of a university at Buduburam, coupled with the programmes of study offered by it, will have a positive impact on the human resource development in the area.
Professor Kwamena Ahwoi is the head of the governing council of the university.
By Fiifi Mensah/Daily Graphic/Ghana