The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications, Dr Kenneth Ashigbey, has admonished graduates from the country’s universities not to be afraid of “getting their hands dirty” in their pursuit of successful lives.
“There is no shame in a graduate working with his hands”, he said, and recommended to them to use their time, talents and hobbies to raise different streams of incomes besides their main jobs.
Dr Ashigbey was addressing the Sixth Congregation of the University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) in Sunyani last Saturday.
A total of 1,753 undergraduate and postgraduate students, made up of 1,247 males and 506 females were awarded with various degrees and diploma certificates during the ceremony.
Among the graduates were the first three PhD graduates of the university.
Dr Ashigbey, who was the guest speaker at the function, reminded the graduates that univkenersity education was a universal one that has offered them the ability and skills to be analytical and critical in their thinking.
“It has given you the ability to be a problem-solver”, he stated, explaining that Ghana as a middle-income country was saddled with several challenges, which presented them with opportunities for creating jobs through the solutions they could craft.
“With all the knowledge you have acquired, this is not the time to go seek jobs and become one of those who would be complaining of the lack of job opportunities”, Dr Ashigbey told the graduates.
He, therefore, urged them to apply their knowledge to solve problems for people and package them in such a way that others would want to pay for that solution.
“In this fourth industrial revolution realm, knowledge is changing and knowledge abounds and you should not stop learning. You should seek opportunities to apply the knowledge acquired, laced with some digital skills to build solutions that would solve local problems and have the opportunity of being scaled up globally”, Dr Ashigbey said.
He told the graduates that the world had witnessed several geniuses who failed in their career progression because of the lack of moral ideas and compass and, therefore, challenged them to activate the word, “integrity” in the university’s motto into their lives wherever they found themselves.
According to him, many employers today were disillusioned and disappointed with the level of dishonesty among their employees.
He said a lot of businesses were bringing in foreigners to superintend over their businesses because of lack of integrity by Ghanaian employees and called for such a situation to change.
“Let us hold integrity as key. Being a professional of high moral integrity will open up for you greater opportunities in your career path… Never resolve to cut corners in an effort to get rich quick,” he advised.
For his part, the Vice Chancellor of UENR, Professor Elvis Asare-Bediako, said as a young institution, the university was saddled with teething challenges, prominent among which were insufficient lecture halls, inadequate laboratory equipment, insufficient accommodation for students, staff accommodation and office space constraints.
Others were transportation and health facility challenges as well as financial constraints, among others.
In spite of these challenges, Prof. Asare-Bediako said the university had erected two pavilions with 200 seating capacity as lecture rooms out of its internally-generated funds.
Prof. Asare-Bediako added that UENR was collaborating with TABCON Energy, a development consulting company operating in the area of renewable energy sector, to provide a 10-megawatt hybrid power that would contribute to the national grid.
He announced that during the year, the university promoted seven of its lecturers to the grade of associate professors while several lecturers were also promoted to senior lecturers and urged them to continue to hoist the flags of UENR and Ghana across the globe.
More than 20 graduates were given special awards for their academic excellence with Miss Rhoda Antwi Kwakyewaa, who received three awards, winning the Best Female as well as the Vice Chancellor’s Overall Best Student Award.