UEW Kumasi and Mampong campuses changes name to AAM-USTED; gets own governing council

BY: Enoch Darfah Frimpong
Dr. Mathew Opoku Prempeh - Minister of Education
Dr. Mathew Opoku Prempeh - Minister of Education

The College of Technology Education in Kumasi (COLTEK) and the College of Agriculture in Mampong - Ashanti (CAGRIC) which have been carved from the University of Education, Winneba (UEW) to form a new university has its own Governing Council now.

The University is now known as the Akenten Appiah-Menka University of Skills Training and Entrepreneurial Development (AAM-USTED).

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo signed the university's bill into law on August 27, 2020.

AAM-USTED is to spearhead the government's vision to engender job creation and industrialization of the nation via effective technical and vocational education training (TVET).

The Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh on Friday [November 27, 2020] administered the oaths to the Governing Council at a brief ceremony in Kumasi.

Out of the 16-member Governing Council, it was 11 that was sworn into office.

This is because the representatives from the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG), Tertiary Education Workers Union (TEWU), Alumni, Graduate Students Association of Ghana (GRASSAG) and the Students Representative Council are yet to be selected.

The members of the Governing Council that were present and were sworn into office are Mr Paul Kwasi Agyeman (Government nominee), Dr Joseph A. Apprey (Government nominee), Nana Bamfi-Adomako (Government nominee), Madam Nora Bannerman (Government nominee), Nana Ama A. Prempeh Gyesaw (Government nominee), Prof Mark Adom Asamoah (GTEC), Dr Stephen Baffour Adjei (Convocation), Mr Evans Douglas Salvo (APTVET), Dr Fred Kyei Asamoah (Commission for TVET), Dr Yaw Adu Gyamfi (AGI) and Prof. F. K. Sarfo as the acting Vice Chancellor.

First Vice Chancellor

Prof. F. K. Sarfo, who was the Principal of COLTEK could become the first Vice Chancellor of AAM-USTED if confirmed. He is currently working in an acting capacity.

Council chair

The first chairman of the University Governing Council is Mr Paul Kwasi Agyeman.

Already, Graphic Online understands the the government has made efforts to help improve infrastructure and quality of staff at the university.

A number of lecturers have gained scholarship to pursue further studies abroad.

The university boasts of some of the best workshops and laboratories or skills training and entrepreneurial development.

Minister's address

The Minister of Education, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh in an address at the ceremony explained that the representatives from UTAG, TEWU, Alumni and SRC could only be selected after the University has been formerly created.

This, according to him, was to avoid legal tussle as has been experienced in other universities because due process was not followed in the selection of the representatives of those groups.

Mandate

AAM-USTED was created by Act 1026 (2019) which converted the College of Technology Education, Kumasi (COLTEK) and the College of Agriculture Education, Mampong (CAGRIC) campuses of the University of Education, Winneba into a fully-fledged and autonomous university.

The new university has the mandate to provide higher education in technical and vocational training and also to train and provide teachers with the relevant competence for teaching in technical and vocational education and training institutions.

The university is also required to foster links between the University, industry and the community in order to ensure the holistic training of teachers.
Focus

Dr Prempeh who inaugurated the governing council on behalf of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo charged the council to remain focus on its mandate and not to derail.

“It is particularly important that you be guided at all times by the specific purpose for which this university is set up.

“In all your decisions and deliberations, you must not lose focus of this and be tempted to introduce programmes that are of no relevance to the core mandate of this university. I cannot stress this enough,” he stated.

Prof F.K. Sarfo

Earlier, in his welcome address, the acting Vice Chancellor of AAM-USTED, Prof Frederick K. Sarfo, thanked President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo Addo for giving the University autonomy and making do with his promise.

He said about a year ago, the president gave a firm promise of a full autonomy during his visit to the then COLTEK.

“This promise has come into fruition today with the inauguration of the maiden council for the University, underscoring the fact that Nana is indeed ‘Oseadeeyo',” he observed.

Prof Sarfo also paid glorious tribute to the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II for his vision and commitment to bring autonomy to COLTEK and CAGRIC into a reality.

Graphic Online's reporter in Kumasi, Kwadwo Baffoe Donkor contributed to this report

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