The Minister of Education, Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh has said, government is committed to continuing its efforts to make public libraries lively and connected spaces for life-long learning.
He made this statement in the speech delivered on his behalf by Mrs. Gifty Twum Ampofo, Deputy Minister of Education in charge of TVET, at the virtual convocation of the first graduates of the Commonwealth of Learning (CoL) and Coursera Workforce Recovery Program.
He indicated “Our public libraries across the country will continue to be supported as we have done over the past few years and make them connected and lively spaces for life-long learning.
We are currently equipping public libraries with computers and connecting them to internet to enable them offer more opportunities for our citizens who do not have their own devices and computers to also benefit”.
Commonwealth of Learning and Coursera entered into a partnership with the Ghana Library Authority (GhLA) to roll out an initiative to support Ghanaians to enroll on over 3800 carefully curated courses online delivered by top universities and companies.
This initiative seeks to offer 50,000 commonwealth citizens an opportunity to attain new skills to enhance job prospects in this COVID-19 period. The project, launched in May 2020 by CoL and Coursera, already has 12,227 Ghanaians enrolled.
The Tuesday virtual convocation witnessed the recognition of over 2,000 Africans who have graduated from their selected online courses. Ghana had the highest number of graduates of over 1,200.
The Minister of Education advised selected Ghanaians to make use of the opportunity; “I wish to encourage all Ghanaians who have been selected to commit to completing their course modules, assignments and most importantly, acquire new skills to make you relevant for the job market or start your own enterprises” he stated.
Speaking on the convocation, the Executive Director of the Ghana Library Authority – Mr. Hayford Siaw said, “the GhLA will continuously ensure that Ghanaians have access to opportunities for self-development to enable them become attractive on the job market, especially during this pandemic period”.
Mr. Siaw also stated that he was excited Ghana has the highest number of beneficiaries on this programme and he looks forward to working with CoL and other development partners to offer more of such opportunities.
Joining in the convocation were the President and CEO of COL – Professor Asha Kanwar, Coursera CEO – Jeff Maggioncalda, Botswana’s Minister of Tertiary Education, Research, Science and Technology – Dr. Douglas Letsholathebe, Namibia’s Minister of Art, Education and Culture – The Honourable Ms. Esther Anna Nghipondoka and Ghana’s Minister of Education – The Honourable Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh who was represented by Mrs. Gifty Twum Ampfo, Deputy Minister, in charge of TVET.