Toyota Ghana inaugurate US$1m engineering training centre at UG


The University of Ghana and Toyota Ghana Company Limited (TGCL) have inaugurated a state-of-the-art University of Ghana–Toyota Ghana School of Engineering Sciences Training Centre.

Addressing the purpose of the gathering, Prof. Boateng Onwona‐Agyeman, Provost of the College of Basic and Applied Sciences (CBAS) provided a historical background of the project and expressed gratitude to key figures who were involved in the different phases of the project. He acknowledged the pivotal role of both current and former leadership of the University, including former Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Ebenezer Oduro Owusu, Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Nana Aba Appiah Amfo and the Japanese Ambassadors to Ghana since 2016, as well as the past and present CEOs and MDs of Toyota Ghana for their critical roles.

Prof. Nana Aba Appiah Amfo, who chaired the event, detailed the project’s significance. She highlighted the collaborative vision that began in 2016, aiming to enhance experiential learning and industrial attachment for engineering students to make them job ready.

She revealed that the state-of-the-art facility, a multipurpose workshop, body and paint facility, and delivery centre valued at US$1 million represents one of the major investments the University had received from industry.

“This significant investment by Toyota Ghana Company Limited will undoubtedly play a pivotal role in shaping the future of engineering education not only at the University of Ghana but throughout the country and beyond,” the Vice-Chancellor said.

Prof. Amfo further stated that Toyota Ghana will provide engineering equipment worth two million US dollars over a ten-year period, emphasising the Company’s unwavering commitment to the project’s sustainability.

She stated: “The commissioning of this Training Centre could not have come at a better time, as plans are far advanced for our School of Engineering Sciences to introduce a Mechanical Engineering programme. The University of Ghana-Toyota Ghana School of Engineering Sciences Training Centre will enhance our capacity to provide crucial support for hands-on training for our engineering students, based on a curriculum co-developed by both parties, which includes training in automobile-related software”.

Minister of Education, Dr. Yaw Osei Adutwum, who was Special Guest, commended the collaboration between the University and Toyota Ghana, and the University’s commitment to establishing sustainable partnerships. He encouraged other educational and research institutions to follow the University’s example.

The education minister emphasised that such cooperations foster interactions between academia and industry, which, in turn, enhance students’ skills and capabilities, preparing them for 21st-century education. The Minister acknowledged the progress being made to reform the country’s education sector.

He reiterated the government’s commitment to investing in education, particularly in STEM education, through the establishment of specialised STEM high schools in parts of the country. He noted that these schools would supply the training centre with students with a strong interest in engineering.

On his part, Mr. Kohji Yanaka, CEO & MD of Toyota Ghana, underscored the Company’s commitment to industrial development in Ghana and its role in supporting automotive skills and technology development.

“This new facility is an expression of our commitment towards the industrial development of Ghana by providing comprehensive automotive solutions to encounter the rising demands which shall be driven by the full implementation of the Automotive Development Policy and by providing an academic and practical platform for upgrading automotive skills and technology as well stated in the Auto Policy,” Mr. Yanaka mentioned.

He noted the company’s responsibility to engage in impactful projects, including a scholarship fund for needy engineering students and a student exchange programme with Tokyo University of Foreign Studies.

Mr. Yanaka said: “We are dedicated to being a socially responsible company by executing impactful projects in the areas of Health, Education, Environment, and Road Safety within the communities we operate. It was during these activities that we developed our partnership with the University of Ghana through our patronisation of the student exchange programme with Tokyo University of Foreign Studies. As of today, 2 students from the University of Ghana are studying at Japan”.

He detailed Toyota Ghana’s pivotal role in financing the construction of the state-of-the-art training facility and announced the donation of a Toyota Coaster 33-seater bus to facilitate student transportation.

The Toyota Ghana MD also announced, “to further support brilliant but financially challenged engineering science students, Toyota Ghana is establishing a scholarship fund for needy students at the School of Engineering Sciences.”

The Japanese Ambassador to Ghana, Hisanobu Mochizuki, praised the collaborative effort and investment by Toyota Ghana in enhancing the practical knowledge of Ghanaian engineering students. He considered the facility a key infrastructure for skills development in Ghana and reiterated Japan’s commitment to support further collaborations.

In brief remarks, the Chair of the University Council, Justice Sophia A. B. Akuffo (Rtd.), described the facility as a significant advancement in the University’s efforts to improve teaching and learning. She extended appreciation to the Management of Toyota Ghana and all stakeholders who played critical roles in completing the facility.

In a symbolic gesture, the Managing Director of Toyota Ghana handed over the bus to the Vice-Chancellor, through the Minister for Education and the Chair of the University Council.

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