Academic City poised to groom youth for entrepreneurship

Prof. Fred McBagonluri- President, Academic City

The President of Academic City, Prof. Fred McBagonluri has emphasised the institution’s resolve to train students through its strategic curriculum in a way that prepares them to be innovative and entrepreneurial.

Prof. McBagonluri said this in his address at the Ghana Tech Summit dinner in Accra organised by Academic City to host guests and speakers present for the three-day summit.

Decrying the spate of unemployment among graduates in the country, the President said: “This generation of human beings in my opinion are probably the most brilliant that ever walked this planet, and yet they graduate from our universities and they cannot find jobs. Something has to be wrong in our university institutions.

Early stage start-ups are here to provide solutions that work, and so although we have 60 universities in Ghana, if our kids are not getting jobs, it means we are not providing solutions that work.”

He further added that his outfit, having realised the gap between academia and industry, has designed a curriculum and teaching strategies that will prepare students for industry after graduating.

“At Academic City, we are engaging these students and we give a curriculum that is strong and a teaching mythology that is different from what we have. So we want to have the best workshop in Ghana an we have invested $2.2million to that effect.

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The other thing we will do differently, is employ faculty members and employees that have had real life work experience. For instance, how do you teach engineering when you have never practised it? And that is one of the reasons we have graduates who cannot find jobs, because they are taught by people who do not know what the real-world entails. We want to change that dynamic. We want to make sure our students can take class projects into industry,” he added.

Asked in an interview with the B&FT about his assessment of Ghana’s tech space currently, Prof. McBagonluri indicated that the country is at it’s early stage, stressing however, his optimism at the growth of the area in the coming years with the efforts of government and institutions like his outfit.

“The technology space is at its early stage in Ghana, and there is an interest globally. Our economy is growing and there is definitely an interest for people to come here. We have institutions that are beginning to drive this ecosystem and that is exactly what we are going to do in our campus.”

Mr. Vinay Gokaldas

Vinay Gokaldas, a tech consultant also mentioned in an interview with the B&FT on the sidelines of the event that even though Ghana has not been left out in the revolution in the tech space, progress in the area has been slower than expected.

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He said: “Ever since that revolution began, we have not looked back in Ghana, just that the pace of development has not been as fast as what people expect it to be. But we are very much making strides.

I am quite impressed with what has been built up so far, but I think we have a lot of work to do and there is a lot of room here for progress,” Mr. Gokaldas added.

Academic City College is a higher education institution which is set to admit its first batch of students in September this year, with the vison of offering premium tertiary education focused on the STEM approach.

Located at Haatso in Accra, the institution will train students in programmes such as Engineering, Information Technology, Business, and Communication Studies.

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