661 students have graduated from the Presbyterian University College, Ghana (PUCG) for the year 2016 at a ceremony at its Okwahu Campus. The University which is accredited to the National Accreditation Board is affiliated to University of Ghana, University of Cape Coast and the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology.
The students who graduated from the following degree programmes: Business Administration, Business Economics, Agribusiness, Rural and Community Development, Environmental and Natural Resources Management, ICT, Mathematics, Nursing and Physician Assistantship comprised 352 males and 309 females.
55 students of the total number of graduating students got First Class Honours (39 males and 16 females); Second Class Upper Division: 289 students (142 males and 147 females); Second Class Lower division: 217 students (116 males and 101 females)
There were 18 awards for some of the graduating students for excellent performance. Out of this figure, female students won 10 of the awards.
Financial Challenges to Private Universities
The President, Rev. Prof. Emmanuel Adow Obeng noted that the financial distress of the private universities is compounded by the payment of huge sums of monies to Mentoring Institutions and Regulatory bodies.
He said the affiliation charges of the Mentoring Institution and the accreditation fees of the Regulatory body are too high that very little is left for infrastructural development, faculty and staff development and training, libraries, attraction and retention of staff and research.
The President of PUCG posited that operating a tertiary institution is an expensive enterprise. “There is the need for the existing private universities to think of mergers-the merger of common minded universities or universities with same historical roots are to merge to ensure their survival”.
Rev. Prof. E. Adow Obeng appealed to the National Accreditation Board to put a cap on the establishment of new private universities to enable the already established private universities to survive and improve on their delivery, except those to be set up in the areas of science, technology, health and medical sciences.
The PUCG President implored the Government to review its policy on taxing private universities. I pray that some political party will make this an item in its manifesto-No tax for private universities.
“The killer to these all is the payment of tax, on non-existent profits, at the end of the financial year to the taxman”, he bemoan the situation.
The policy of non-employment of graduate nurses by government health institutions poses a problem especially to private universities many of which have Departments of Nursing. In fact, this policy is affecting admissions into these departments.
He said there are many vacancies in the health sector than the number of graduates coming out of the Departments of Nursing in the country. “What is the need for this policy? We call on government to reverse this policy”, he questioned.
The President informed the congregation about PUCG receiving accreditation for two new programmes in Education – Bachelor of Education (Business Studies) and Bachelor of Education (Social Studies) – and said these two departments are the foundation departments of the Faculty of Education.
Academic programmes that have been developed by the University to commence soon are MA in International Development, MED in Educational Studies, MSc in Environmental Health and Sanitation, and MSc in Natural Resources Management.
The others are MSc in Forensic Audit and Investigation, MSc in Financial Risk Management and MA in Public Relations and Corporate Communications BSc. Actuarial Science, BSc. Optometry, Law, and BSc. Midwifery.
Ms. Emily Asaa Addison, a BSc. Mathematics student of the Faculty of Science and Technology was adjudged the Overall Best Student. She also received the Overall Best Female Graduating Student and Faculty Best Student Awards.
Addressing the Congregation, the President of PUCG, Rev. Prof. Emmanuel Adow Obeng thanked the parents and guardians and said “It is your confidence in us, three or four years ago to entrust your sons, daughters and wards to us for training that has resulted in today’s ceremony”.
He was confident that the graduands will excel in life because the University has invested a lot in Christian moral values and excellent academic teaching in their training to ensure that they indeed become agents of transformation in the Ghanaian society and the world at large