Fifty-nine inmates of the Nsawam Prisons are pursuing various diploma programmes in Business and Education through the University of Cape Coast’s Distance Learning Programme.
Twenty-seven of them are reading Diploma in Commerce, (Management and Accounting options), while the remaining 32 are studying Diploma in Junior High School Education (Science, Mathematics, English, Social Studies options).
This novel project, dubbed; “Inmates Tertiary Education Programme” follows a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Ghana Prisons Service and Plan Volta Foundation, to allow long-term serving inmates to enrol onto the University of Cape Coast (UCC’s) Distance Learning Programme of higher education.
Professor Joseph Ghartey Ampiah, the Vice-Chancellor of UCC, made this known in a speech read on his behalf by Professor Johnson Nyarko Boampong, Provost, College of Health and Allied Sciences, at the matriculation ceremony for students of the Southern Zone of its College of Distance Education (CoDE) for the 2019/2020 academic year.
The ceremony was an official platform to receive and admit students into different programmes under the CoDE, through swearing a matriculation oath. They comprised fresh students from various learning centres in the Western and Central regions who were enrolled for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.
A total of 13,089 students were admitted into the University to pursue both undergraduate and postgraduate courses through the CoDE in Education and Business.
Of the number, 9, 323 are pursuing various programmes in Education with the remaining 3,767 reading Business related programmes, while 1,181 students were admitted for the postgraduate programmes.
On the gender break down, 6,566 are males while 6,523 are females, representing 50.2 per cent, a 1.99 per cent increase over the previous year.
Prof Ghartey Ampiah expressed delight about the feat chalked with respect to the University’s quest for gender parity in enrolment, and that attaining appreciable gender balance in university admission had significant socio-economic implications for the society.
In that regard, he urged the female working class to take advantage of the convenience and flexibility offered by the Distance Education and enrol in the programmes to enhance their economic, political and social status.
The Vice-Chancellor said plans were underway for the CoDE to roll out a virtual classroom facility for its post-graduate studies to enable students to have access to lectures at all times.
In addition, he said all course modules would be uploaded onto the University’s e-learning platform to ensure that students had access to soft information.
He said the College had initiated processes to bring on board undergraduate and post-graduate programmes from the faculties of Arts and Social Sciences as means of ensuring as many programmes as possible that were run in the conventional system to the Distance mode for applicants to have variety of choices of programme.
These include BSc Economics, BSc Economic and Finance, MSCc. Microfinance, MSc. Social Science, MSc Data Management and Analysis and MSc Economics of Technology and Development.