This article is dedicated to all first years. I don’t have to call you freshers again, because the Vice Chancellor who is the essence and the embodiment of the University has formally and ceremoniously admitted and welcomed you as junior members in Statu Pupillari of this noble academic institution (KOFORIDUA TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY-KTU). So, you are now bona fide students of KTU and will thus be entitled to all the privileges accorded students of this noble institution as well as bound by all the responsibilities attached by your new status as students of KTU. It is therefore refreshing and a privilege for me to also welcome you to the academic environment of the University by this write up.
One of the most important decisions you will take in your life is the choice of school at which to pursue your education, I believe that you considered all options open to you and identified this University, as the University that best suits your purpose and aspirations. I take this opportunity to congratulate you once again on your admission into this University.
I trust that you will find your academic career here both challenging and rewarding. I trust that by now you are accustomed to campus and around campus life a bit.
ABOUT TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY IN GENERAL
Well, you are in a TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY, and according to those whose voices carry weight, they have reviewed literatures on technical universities in Africa (South Africa and Kenya), Europe (Germany and Denmark), and Asia (Japan and India) and have come to the conclusion that, based on key characteristics and general orientation, technical universities:
- provide education and training for the world of work: students are trained to acquire high level employable skills for wage or self-employment
- have strong links with industry and business
- support existing and emerging productive sectors of the economy with technical expertise
- are focused on practical research activities, including industry and market-driven joint research projects
- offer programmes that are vocationally oriented or career focused
- provide skills training at all levels: certificate, diploma, degree, and postgraduate degree levels
- are autonomous or semi-autonomous in their governance and management practices
- offer courses and programmes covering a wide range of economic activities
- place emphasis on innovation and application of new technologies, including ICT
- have well trained faculty imbued with both academic and professional experience
- admit capable students into science and technology based programs
- possess top grade teaching and learning facilities
- engage in consultancy and contract management activities
- encourage staff and student mobility
- provide skills training from the middle level to the highest level possible
So, my Treasured ones, this is where you are KOFORIDUA TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY, you would love here basaaa, I hope you have started admiring the Obour Tabiri mountain, yeah! the mountain you are seeing is called Obour Tabiri, don’t worry I will take you there for hiking one day for free when your CGPA reaches 4.50 out of 5.00 at your fourth semester.
By order from above, Universities such as: KNUST, UCC, UDS, UMAT and UG are called TRADITIONAL UNIVERSITIES, please I don’t know whether they teach the traditions of Ghana there that’s why it’s called traditional University oooo. And where you have found yourself is a TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY.
In summary they say a technical university or university of applied sciences is a technological university with focus on the application of technology to the various fields of learning. I don’t agree with their definition, but who am I, do I hold a PhD? No, do I know what it takes to be a Professor? Big NO.
The differences between a technical university and a traditional university as stated by the PhD holders and Professors are shown in the table below.
(University of Applied Sciences)
|Teaching and practice-oriented||Theory and research oriented|
|Applied or strategic research with focus on solving practical problems and providing technology solutions that make production systems more efficient||Integration of research and teaching|
|Skills-driven or acquisition of employable skills||Knowledge-driven or quest for new knowledge|
|Focus on technology development, innovation and technology transfer||Focus on fundamental research and cutting-edge technology development|
|Emphasis on what must be learnt to respond to industry needs and learner interests||Emphasis on mainly disciplinary approach to learning and promotion of scholarship|
I hope you have finished reading from the table. As for me, I think looking at a technical university from some typical Ghanaian political goggles: they see a technical university as a tertiary institution, which appears asymptotically a University, created to absorb the traditional university rejected students, so that they don’t go straying on the streets leading them to becoming a threat or burden on the society, but don’t mind them for ‘‘the end justifies the means’’. If you think my assertion is wrong, you can ask the Professors and Doctors who made that differentiation that, if their children are admitted to study Civil Engineering at KNUST and KTU where would the send them? Makaa maka and if you are a lady and you don’t agree with me, I am in my room, you can come and impregnate me.
They further explain that: The fact that technical universities emphasize a close engagement with the world of work does not mean disengagement from the basic academic orientation of higher education institutions. Engagement with industry means bringing the world of work into the classroom and placing practical knowledge and research results at the disposal of industry. Blending academic pursuits with practical goals of promoting societal and economic wellbeing of the population is one of the hallmarks of universities of applied sciences. While the focus is on applied research, technical universities may contribute their expertise at any point along the product development chain from basic research to commercialization in collaboration with traditional (research) universities.
ABOUT KOFORIDUA TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY
The University occupies a scenic total land space of 78.41 acres. The University shares common boundaries with Capital View Hotel and Simpoa Meansa to the East, Osabene and Akwapim North District Assembly to the North, the main Koforidua – Accra road to the West, and New Juaben Senior High and SSNIT Flats at Adweso to the South.
The meaning of the black adinkra symbol (which consists of horizontal and vertical stripes joined) which is located in the middle of the University logo is that: If you don’t know and you learn, you will know. And the University motto is INNOVATING (not innovation) for DEVELOPMENT. The University currently awards: Certificate, Diploma (DBS, DPA and HND) and Bachelor’s Degree(BSc and BTech). So, I know you may be offering a program which may lead you to being AWARDED any of the above qualifications. Don’t forget, I said AWARDED not EARNED.
TECHNIQUES IN LEARNING
Well, let me brag about myself small before I proceed with the techniques in learning, . As the Overall best graduating student of this University (the degree category) for the year 2018, with an overwhelming final Cumulative Grade Point Average of 4.83 out of 5.00, I also believe that I am the best graduating student of all time of this University over her two decades of existence, even though the University failed to give me such recognition. O jack I thought upon reading this you will give me some standing ovation and cheer me up. Or you don’t want me to talk about my laurels here, you want me to die before my Abusuapanin(family head) will come and read or display my laurels at my funeral? Not at all.
Since I have triumphed over the system, it will therefore make sense for me to tell you how I used to learn so that you can imitate me, to make a success out of your academic life here.
First of all, I believe that the ability to learn, understand, and recall what you have learnt easily, is a gift as recorded at Daniel 1:17. Moreover, if you don’t have this easy to recall gift, by consistent insistence learning, one can become academically good, this restless approach of learning too is also in harmony with the teachings of the Bible as recorded at Genesis 27:40.
Some of my key secrets to learning were: I sometimes write down the very words of the lecturers to serve as a guide for me when learning. Frequently, I also meditate upon what I have learnt, seriously, meditation is a powerful way of getting things stick to your brains. Please meditation is not regurgitation (chew and poor) ooooo.
Furthermore, I painstakingly take good notes and most importantly learn ahead of lectures, this enable me to ask good questions during lectures. In fact, I don’t start learning when it’s approaching exams (actually during exams time I don’t learn, but revise), in situations where I couldn’t make goods notes because the lecturer was moving very fast, immediately I get to my HOMESTEL(not HOSTEL), I will neatly rewrite the points I jotted during the lecture.
When learning, every page I study, I pause and ask myself series of question that are likely to be asked by the lecturer from that page and provide answers to those questions by surfing the internet for answers, or seek assistances from friends and sometimes, consult the lecturers themselves. As a guide you can use past questions and question solved during lectures to predict the type of questions the lecturer is likely to ask.
One of the mistakes I avoided was answering exams questions in the exams room. What I mean is that, before sitting for an exam, I will solve series of questions, so answering a question in the exams room becomes normal to me. In all, one thing I have come to accept is that the best way to learn is to teach, honestly sometimes I learn by acting like I am teaching somebody. Furthermore, I knew the difference between studying and reading, so I was studying my lecture notes, I wasn’t reading my lecture notes.
FINALLY, YOU MADE IT
After accumulating a pamphlet of Nov-Dec certificates, you too you are here some finally, can’t you see God is wonderful? Hahahahhahaahahahaaa. Those of you too who forged your date of birth to enable you to write the mature exams, you can’t change it again even by affidavit, if you think you are smart, we are hurry up, you will go on pre-mature pension one day. You will come for your transcript and bam, your forged date of birth is on it.
As you enter the magnificent architecturally designed gates of the University, pressure will catch you as a first-year student and as lectures progresses the pressure will turn to stress, hahhahaha, but don’t worry about those false alarms about some certain courses like, Fluid Mechanics, Engineering Thermodynamics and Engineering Maths, they are the cheapest, or the average boosters, as for Comm skills it’s just normal pronouns, nouns and adjectives you would just slaughter it.
Are you worried about the voluminous notes of African studies? Don’t worry, you just have to know something small about witches and wizards and you are through.
But let me make one thing clear to you, you may be the ‘sharkest’ at your previous school, but when you get here, the system may make you less endowed. This just reminded me of my first unannounced quiz in Strength of Materials I, I had zero over ten, the system just humbled me.
The lecturers are also very friendly and approachable, so don’t be afraid to approach them, but always show them the necessary respect, because they are the WAEC.
It does not matter by what means you came, whether by choice or circumstance, you are here. Have you heard of this saying before? “The end justifies the means(medium)’’, this saying means that, the person you have become will enable us to know whether the medium or channel you passed to reach that feat or height is good or bad.
So, don’t worry you couldn’t make it to any of their so called ‘traditional Universities’, but be happy and appreciative to this University, because this University has given you the opportunity to pursue programs which theoretically, have serious job prospect (you are offering prospective programs that per your E8S and D7s WASSCE results you wouldn’t have been offered at the ‘traditional Universities).
The truth is that society doesn’t care about the means(medium), the medium I am taking about can be KNUST or KTU, but they care about who you have become (the end). So, make the most out of this opportunity, and justify your means by becoming great at the end.
For instance, Koforidua Technical University has given you the opportunity to pursue Civil Engineering with aggregate ‘buum’ and you are not appreciative for that, you cry you wish you were in KNUST, if it were to be left to KNUST alone, you would have been left to rot on the streets. Come on let me hear you say thank KTU. Anyway, no Job anywhere so don’t think that the future is a bed of roses with you pursuing those theoretically prospective programs. Let’s Laugh Out Laud together!!!!
Now to those of you who came here with palm-wine budget but because of friends you were living a champagne life, you see you are now broke, just some few weeks you entered campus, next time you go learn sense. Let me give you some pieces of advice if you are lazy at cooking like me, come to Junction one or the bush canteen, Ooooo my God, you will get all the varieties of food you desire at low cost. At junction five too, just opposite the VC’s residence, ooo gobɛ Joint, you buy small beans and add more gari, the whole day you are full, that’s all.
Taxi fares are unbearable, so you can catch troski at Poly junction, in case you want to go to the Central Business District(CBD) or town. My dear, this University is not meant for fashion parade, so don’t spend all your money on cloth wai, but make sure you regularly wash your hair, sometime ago a lady accidentally passed her hair under my nose, and I instantly had catarrh from that.
Sister because someone was obstructing your view with her iPad or iPhone at church so you want to also go and buy one, please just remember where you came from and use your Techno W4 like that wai, in fact, feeding those phones are costly than feeding yourself. Thank you.
ON EXAMS MALPRACTICE
Please take this warning serious, if you know that the witches and wizards in your home are barbaric, then I will urge you not to try anything funny in the exams room, here when you copy or cheat in exams and you are caught olalaaaaaaaa, you are either withdrawn or rusticated. Immediately your GPA comes below 1.5 too, you will be placed on probation. I hope at the orientation you were told that when you fail four or more courses in a semester, the VC will send you a pleasant exodus letter, ayooooooooo.
The cost of registering for one resit paper is GHc 50 my Precious one is not easy ooo, even the queue you will join before paying that money hmmmmmm. Whenever you want to cheat in the exams, just remember that your Mom has gather all her world to place you here, after selling on the stinky gutters and scorch sun of Kaneshie. Thank you for saving your Mother’s life by not cheating.
ON GRAMMAR (COMMUNICATION SKILLS)
On more serious note, some of you too, your subject verb agreement(concord) stinks, your pronunciations are appalling, and your spellings can cause abortion, aden(why)? you had F9 in English and so what? Some few days ago a lady almost beheaded me with her excruciating grammar. Please when lecturers are marking they don’t have time for your suicidal grammars, so you better polish your grammar, abufusɛm arakwa.
Seriously, when was the last time you communicated in English continuously for three hours on campus? My dear if you don’t start speaking good English now, you will one day disgrace yourself on Television. Is not too late, you can read students’ companion or mind your language by Annor Nimako to resurrect your breathless English.
ON CAMPUS MANNERS AND ETIQUETTE
I know you just left the hooks of SHS restrictions and you are trying to acclimatise yourself with the University freedom life, so let me help you out with some University manners and etiquette. Here we don’t walk around while holding food and eating at the same time, my beloved please free yourself from the shackles of cocoa-ase living wai. We don’t also litter anywhere in and around campus and even anywhere in Ghana.
Some few days ago I heard someone saying I am going to class, Jack here we don’t say that, but rather we say I am going for lectures, you just have to understand the language culture, also please, note that where you are lectured is not called classrooms we call it lecture rooms or halls or theatre. And finally, your friends are your course mates not you class mates.
ON GRABBING: TO THE GUYS
As much as I know, the University (Universal city) is not built for kids, my brothers have you grab one yet? I mean have you gotten a romantic partner on campus yet in case you came here Adarkwa(single)? If no, take a bold and respectful step and approach that beautiful Koforidua flower and sugar coat words to her, but be straight to the point don’t beat about the bush.
If she refuses your romantic relationship proposal, try different one, by the time you will finish proposing to 20 ladies one will agree. If you don’t know how to approach a lady, you can go for tutorials at the Animal Kingdom (Universal hall), that hall the day it will burn, even though it’s a male only hall, the number of laddies that will die will exceed the number of guys.
ON GRABBING: TO THE LADIES (Koforidua flowers)
My beautiful, gorgeous, succulent and luscious ladies popularly known as Koforidua flowers, please listen to me well well, this University is the only environment where you would get a cluster of educated unoccupied young men who meet your standard to propose to you. As a lady, you have no choice, than to marry somebody who is above your level or at your level and where you have reached in education now, not every guy can propose to you, so be soft on them when they approach, delaying their response doesn’t mean you are expensive and responding quickly doesn’t mean you are cheap.
Just look at the area you stay at home, there are 100 guys who are not married but out of the 100, 50 are class 6 dropouts, as such they are not eligible, 25 completed JHS these ones too disqualified, 15 completed SHS they are also below the belt and the 10 remaining guys are dating or shy of you.
As such, if you miss the opportunity of grabbing one on campus, oooooo ATWEA MOUNTAINS may be your home after school, I bet you. If you think I am lying ask your sister, she completed more than five years ago and she is still single, because all the guys at her hood are not gathering the courage to propose to her, because of her level of education and because she works at a high-class place, or maybe she owns a car, then she would chop spinster till death.
Being on campus doesn’t mean you have been granted leave from church, go to church and pray, and study the Bible regularly, you can even go to the University park to speak in tongues but please afterwards take your books and study for that is where God will answer your prayer requests.
Because of uncertainties in life, make good friends, this is the only place you can make good friends who have a better potential of reaching a higher position in life, so build links and networks with people from all walks of life. Have fun and participate in every program the University organises, but never forget why you came here. You can even go to the Animal Kingdom and join them charge on Fridays, I mean kingdom morale.
JUST AN EYE OPENER
Let me quickly remind you of this, as you are new some people especially the level 200 students who want to contest for students’ association/council positions will start behaving like they are very friendly. They will come to you or wave at you wherever they see you, but immediately they get that nod, they start behaving like they are not students, in summary open your eyes.
King Solomon of the Bible once said and I quote ‘‘ And further, my son, be admonished by these. Of making many books there is no end, and much study is wearisome to the flesh (Eccl 12:12)’’. Interestingly, the industry has not given preference to the first-class graduate, neither has it favoured the pass graduate. So, throughout your academic studies, do yourself a favour, study as much as you can, remember what you have learnt and your will succeed.
One thing I have come to realise is that, is not about the class you graduate with, but how far you move in the educational ladder. Have you noticed that some people completed Senior High School with aggregate 6-10 but couldn’t make it to tertiary, but you made aggregate 36 and progressed to tertiary and you are enjoying better recognition than him/her? The adage is right: ‘‘the higher you go, the cooler you become’’.
NAME: ABOAGYE Marcos
Qualifications: HND Civil Engineering (First Class)-Koforidua Polytechnic
B’Tech Civil Engineering (First Class)-Koforidua Technical University.
Awards: Best Graduating student in HND Civil Engineering, Class of 2012-2015
Best Graduating student in Btech Civil Engineering, Class of 2015-2017
Overall best graduating student-the degree(Btech) category (graduation date is: 2018)
Phone number: +233240171761
Publication: the Author has also published a transformational book which addresses over 30 controversial issues in Christianity entitled ‘THE GOSPEL DECODED’ which is freely available on: www.ktuinsider.com or you can download it from this link: https://www.ktuinsider.com/2018/10/18/the-gospel-decoded-a-book-by-aboagye-marcos-2018-overall-best-graduating-student-btech/