The former Vice-Chancellor of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, (KNUST) and Food Scientist, Prof. William Otoo Ellis has advised Senior Members and Senior Staff of the University of Environment and Sustainable Development (UESD), to be Ambassadors of the University and exhibit characters and values befitting the status of representatives of the University in their dealings with students, their colleagues and the public.
He also asked them to always be defined by the core values of the University which are Honest, Opportunity, Perseverance and Enterprising, HOPE.
Prof. Otoo Ellis said this when he addressed the Senior Members and Senior Staff of the UESD at separate workshops under the University’s two-week HOPE Roadshow project.
The two-week Roadshow project, which is the brainchild of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Eric Nyarko-Sampson (entails a series of workshops and a conference for students) is to inculcate in the staff and, particularly, the students the core values of the University
Speaking on the topic, ‘Incorporating H.O.P.E. in work ethics’, Prof. Otoo Ellis noted that as envoys of the University, they carry the name wherever they find themselves. Therefore, the first sentiment that ‘greets’ visitors who enter the fore walls of the University is for them to experience the ‘spirit’ of HOPE in the workers they encounter.
He noted that the best way staff can incorporate the HOPE values into their activities is to have a renewed mind and attitude and make conscious efforts to live it.
The former Vice-Chancellor explained that unlike other Public Universities that had their foundations determined with ‘little’ room to innovate, the UESD is a brand-new institution within an uncharted area full of possibilities, without impediments or restrictions.
He urged the Management and staff of the University to take advantage of the rare opportunity it presents, to explore areas that will grow the institution.
Prof. Otoo Ellis shared the story of ‘the Tower of Bebel’ in the Old Testament and likened the people of Sheba to the UESD situation. He said, the people of Sheba knew their frailties as a disjointed people and feared for their continuous existence if they did not make any conscious efforts to secure it with a common goal and destiny. With that spirit of purpose, the learned Professor noted that the people were able to build a tower so tall that God brought it down because they had exceeded their limit.
This demonstrates that, with unity and determination, the UESD can achieve its vision of becoming: ’A leading university in the teaching, learning and dissemination of knowledge related to development in environment and agro-business, and create knowledge through research for national development,” so long as Management and the University community are poised to work as a unit with one goal.
The Food Scientist continued, it was a calculated move by the people of Sheba to succeed, so instead of using stones and mortar to build, they went in for bricks and tar and that made their building stand out. He said, for UESD, the bricks and tar represent its core values of HOPE.
Linking the core values with ethics, the knowledgeable Professor indicated that most core values share very close links with work ethics and this has to do with professionalism, integrity, punctuality and discipline. It also entails a sense of responsibility, trustworthiness, respect, fairness, caring and loyalty to the institution. Therefore, members of the UESD community should live their lives worthy of emulation.
In an address, the Vice-Chancellor of the UESD, Prof. Eric Nyarko-Sampson said, the HOPE Roadshow has been designed to identify ways by which such core values could be woven into the work ethics of staff and into the curricular of the University.
He stated that the canker which adversely affects the nation’s development, and has eaten deep into the country’s fabric, can only be corrected or reversed by ensuring that a new generation of honest individuals who create and utilize opportunities, persevere in adversities and achieve desirable results through enterprise to device solutions to tackle difficult perennial and novel situations. He indicated that it is for this reason that the UESD has adopted these core values and is fashioning out ways to inculcate them into the teaching and learning method in the best ways these ideals could be realized.
Prof. Nyarko-Sampson was hopeful that the breed of graduates to be produced by the University, will be endowed with top-notch expertise, interwoven with HOPE and pass on such values to persons they come into contact with.
Adding that, ‘the knowledge acquired in the most honest way to create and utilize opportunities through positive inquisition and open-mindedness, persevering beyond obstacles and be enterprising which will usually require doing things differently and out of the box.’
The Chairperson for the sessions was the Registrar, Mrs. Mary Abena Agyepong. She commended Prof. Otoo Ellis for what she described as an inspirational and thought-provoking presentation. She encouraged the participants to let their life style exude HOPE.