The Kumasi Technical University (KsTU) has trained some 269 artisans and has equipped them with modern and theoretical skills to enhance their practical abilities.
The artisans who were mainly made up of persons with non-formal education have for years been in the informal sector.
Despite their expertise in various fields, these artisans were not regarded in high esteem in comparison with their counterparts who have similar skills and formal education.
As part of a grand agenda by the Kumasi Technical University to equip artisans with relevant and modern training, many persons have benefitted from it in recent years.
“We would like to congratulate the team of artisans who have upgraded their training through the vast training and sensitization of the artisans in the various trade areas. Last year, we trained about 370 artisans and today, 269 of them are graduating.”
“They have been fully admitted to the Ghana Institute of Engineering. Today, they can call themselves engineers. The advice to them is that they should fully represent the Ghana Institution of Engineering. They will be admitted on a platform for artisans designed and powered by Vodafone where you can sit in the comfort of your home and place your order,” Dr. Smart Sarpong, the Director of the Institute of Research Innovation and Development at KsTU.
Dr. Smart Sarpong says the initiative to train the artisans is aimed at changing the behaviour of artisans and enhancing their expertise.
“Gradually, we are growing to the state where there are artisans with the right behaviour, mindset, and the right skills and knowledge to handle the things we call on them to do for us”.
In collaboration with GIZ, the Kumasi Technical University is seeking to train more artisans in the coming years.
“On behalf of the university, we would like to congratulate the 269 graduates and also thank the GIZ for sponsoring this program from last year through to this year. We would like to expand the program to train more artisans within all the other trade areas,” Dr. Smart Sarpong added.
The Ghana Institution of Engineering believes this is in the right direction.
“In 2011, the Parliament of Ghana enacted Act 819 which is called the Engineer Council Act and LI2410 of 2020 which is the regulation of the engineering council. By this law, anyone who is practising anything engineering is supposed to be licensed. When we talk about engineering, there are four occupational groups which are the engineer craftsman, engineering technician, professional engineering technologist, and professional engineer. All these engineering occupations put up the engineering development that we see. Some are with the design at the professional level, and those that implement and those who have hands-on website development.”
“With this, all the engineering practitioners are being brought under one regulatory body. The Ghana Institute of Engineering decided to revise our constitution to embrace craftsmen and technicians to help regulate them properly so that their work will be standardized and also benefit from the training and make sure that they are more professional, ethical and moral which will help them develop their enterprises. So we teamed up with GIZ, Consolidated Bank Ghana, Vodafone, Buss equipment and a few other partners,” a representative of the Ghana Institution of Engineering stated.
John Ntim, the Team leader for invest for Jobs program, says GIZ decided to fund the program to promote job creation in Ghana.
“GIZ Ghana decided with these key actors to implement this project. It was funded by the German government. We are tasked to work with like-minded companies and actors in Ghana to support the job creation agenda. Therefore, this professionalization of artisans program was carved to make sure that the artisans we have in Ghana are professionals and offer good services and by so doing, we will be able to secure more jobs and decent requests by clients to enhance their income and also expand their businesses and employ more people.”
The beneficiaries of the initiative say this will significantly enhance their expertise and add value to their lives.
“I believe that this program will help me a lot in my field of work. This program has expanded my knowledge, especially when it comes to the practical aspects. It has also taught us how to deal with customers, our punctuality when it comes to work, and our appearance have also improved, one of the beneficiaries, Osei Tutu noted.
Another beneficiary, Michael Antwi Boasiako added that “this training has helped us a lot. I secured a job as a painter and applied the knowledge I acquired. I have also extended the knowledge to my workers.”