Universities of Ghana - Botswana to promote academic opportunities

BY: Maclean Kwofi
 Prof. David Norris (right) and Prof. Ebenezer Oduro Owusu shaking hand during the visit
Prof. David Norris (right) and Prof. Ebenezer Oduro Owusu shaking hand during the visit

The University of Ghana (UG) and the University of Botswana (UB) are to partner to promote academic opportunities for students of both countries.

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) between both institutions, which will focus on research and exchange programmes, is expected to be signed before the end of this year.

As a result, the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Botswana, Professor David Norris, paid a courtesy call on his counterpart at the University of Ghana, Professor Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, to further extend the discussions.

Partnership

Briefing the Daily Graphic last Wednesday in Accra, Professor Norris said the main reason for his visit to Ghana was to initiate the partnership between the two institutions.

According to him, the partnership was expected to focus on key areas such as research, exchange programmes and student recruitment for the University of Botswana.

“The backbone of the economy of Botswana is the mining of diamonds and so the UB has a lot of experience in mining engineering from which the UG could learn.

“On the other side, we are aware that Ghana has been mining gold for ages and so we are expecting to learn from that vast experience,” Prof. Norris stated.

He said he was hopeful that the two institutions would put their expertise together to develop products and services that could be commercialised.

Prof. Norris observed that the partnership agreement, which was yet to be developed should present a great opportunity for not only the universities involved but also their respective countries.

While the University of Ghana presently had challenges with regard to facilities, he said, the University of Botswana had enough facilities that could accommodate the excess from their counterpart.

He indicated that one of the UB’s priorities for 2020 was to attract and admit more foreign students, especially from African countries, to undertake courses in various disciplines, with Ghana listed as a priority African nation.

State visit

The one-week visit of Professor Norris, with a team of lecturers to Ghana, is part of a series of activities to attract and admit students who are desirous to attend universities outside the country.

It was facilitated by the Botswana Consulate in Ghana in collaboration with the University of Botswana.

By this, the Consulate is also seeking to improve Botswana-Ghana bilateral relationships at multiple levels including trade enhancement and the sharing of academic awareness opportunities to be opened up by the nations for the purposes of certified knowledge acquisition.

About the UB

The UB is a state-owned university in Botswana that is closely involved in the national development process of that country.

In this regard, the special functions of the university are to engage in improving the quality and expanding the quantity of the human resources needed for development and act as the repository of the collective knowledge and experience of the nation and the world.

The first of these functions is fulfilled through the teaching programmes offered by the university and its affiliated institutions, leading to the award of degrees, diplomas and certificates.

The other function is also carried out individually and collectively by the staff of the university and its affiliated institutions through research and development, consultancies and information services which they undertake.