Top Universities Generate New Ideas through Research-Prof. Ernest Aryeetey

A former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Prof. Ernest Aryeetey, has advocated for the training of more graduate students not only to feed the job market but also to generate new ideas. “All top Universities are to train people for the job market, but it is also their duty to come out with new ideas by engaging in research”, he stressed. Prof. Aryeetey made the statement at the 2nd Research Awards and Grants ceremony organised by the Directorate of Research Innovation and Consultancy (DRIC). The annual event is held to motivate and honour faculty members who have the potential to engage in impact-oriented research or have distinguished themselves in the same regard. The ceremony provided the platform for research awardees and grantees to share their research output and experiences with policy makers, academics, industrialists and the general public for the purpose of national socio-economic transformation. In terms of the selection of the awards, 24 out of the total of 64 who applied for support to undertake new research were successful. They were given various amounts of money to do their work. Again, seven researchers were also presented with cash awards for their previous works. Dr. Ernest Teye and Dr. David Oscar Yawson presented outcomes of their research works for which they were awarded at the function. Prof. Aryeetey said the Sustainable Development Goals could only be achieved with a solid foundation in research. He, therefore, noted, “We can have fertilizer available but we have to teach the farmers new ways of using the chemical. We need to have new ideas always”. On the need to change or focus on graduate studies, the former Vice-Chancellor indicated that, the world has changed and for that reason, UCC must also shift towards that direction to share in the benefits thereof. “There is no need to worry about undergraduate training, because currently there are many universities in Ghana to take care of that”. Prof. Aryeetey added that “Time is now for Africa to get more graduate universities since it provides more job opportunities for the people”. Prof. Aryeetey lauded UCC for the path it has taken to give prominence to research activities but warned that it was not an easy path, since it called for hard work. “What UCC seeks to do and achieve is important but does not come very cheap, you need to work for it, it demands extra effort of all”. On the role of research to the growth of countries, he said there were enough evidence to prove that countries that have embarked on vigorous research activities have grown in all fields. He said there were both difficult and easy ways of doing research. “If you decide to it all by yourself, it will cost more money and time. But the easy way is to have partnership, we need to encourage people to go into partnership especially in Africa”. The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Joseph Ghartey Ampiah said management would continue to provide DRIC with both human and capital resources to undertake its mandate of expanding the frontiers of research both within and outside the university. Prof. Ampiah announced that the research fund has been increased from one hundred thousand to five hundred thousand cedis to enable more faculty members undertake research. He was hopeful that the support provided would not be limited to only the advancement of knowledge but would affect both the University and the society at large. He congratulated all who applied for the grants and assured them of the continued support from DRIC.