General News of Thursday, 5 October 2017
Plans are in the offing by the University of Cape Coast introduce a Bachelors Degree Programme in Chinese
At the first anniversary celebration of UCC Confucius Institute, it was revealed that this will further expand the University’s reach
The Confucius Institute offers opportunity for both students and faculty through grants and scholarship to learn the Chinese language and culture.
The Ghanaian Director of the Institute, Prof. Kwadwo Opoku Agyemang, noted that in almost a decade and a half, the Institute has spread to over 84 countries in the world and over six (6) million people have taken the proficiency test in Chinese as well.
Prof. Opoku Agyemang said currently 410 universities have absorbed the Confucius Institute system into their curriculum and 2.1m new learners have so far been registered this year.
The Ghanaian Director called for the need to think deeply and carefully about the relationship and open up to new opportunities that the collaboration offered.
“For us at UCC, Confucius Institute offers many avenue of growth for development. There has been healthy development between lecturers, administration and officials of the Institute”, he noted.
In an address, the Central Regional Minister, Mr. Kwamena Duncan commended the University for creating the partnership that has brought tremendous benefits to both parties, the region and the country at large. The regional minister said the Chinese have undertaken some major infrastructure development in the country including the Cape Coast Sports Stadium and the Kotokuraba market.
Mr. Duncan said the Chinese placed a lot of value on the teaching and values of Confucius, which were fairness and justice. “Things that underpinned his teaching were fairness and justice; and also believed in the correctness of attitude and punishment for those who deviated”.
“No doubt this period belongs to the Chinese, the world is calling on China for leadership now that America has relinquished its leadership role”.
He commended the leadership of the University for their foresight and urged them to continue to support the institute.
The Chinese Ambassador to Ghana, Her Excellency, Sun Baohong, said the Institute had travelled an extraordinary journey for the past 12 years and has 1.2m students across the world.
“It has become the backbone of learning the language and culture all over the world”. Madam Sun Baohong said Confucius Institute UCC is the 500th to be established in the world and the second in Ghana.
The Ambassador said, the theme, “Ghana-China in Harmony” was apt since the two countries would work with others to promote the development of their peoples.
She said Ghana was the second country in Africa to establish diplomatic relations with China some 56 years ago and the partnership has brought enormous benefit to the countries.
The Pro-Vice-Chancellor, Prof. George K. T. Oduro, in an address, said by opening its curriculum to include Chinese language and culture, the University was creating opportunities to engage with one of the most influential economic and cultural presence in the world.
Prof. Oduro indicated that “at a more immediate level, engaging with China through the Confucius Institute allows us to discover new methodologies and approaches that can ultimately reinvigorate and re-purpose our study of our own Ghanaian culture and languages, including even those foreign languages we have historically learnt to tame by domestic usage”.
Prof. Oduro therefore urged close collaboration between Confucius Institute and our many Language Departments saying, “this is the broad humanistic ideal that incited the creation and crafting of the original proposal leading to the founding of the Confucius Institute at UCC”.
The Pro-Vice-Chancellor noted that in Africa today, the promise of democracy was evolving since there were signs of positive growth and fairness, in institutional development and deep adjustment to the challenges of the day.
“More and more, our leaders are coming to see that the old, closed ways of doing things have to be challenged, and that smart planning hinged on innovation and a robust and balanced system of international cooperation”, he declared.
“In celebrating Confucius Institute at UCC, therefore, we put on display our wish to build for ourselves and our future an open and successful society in which we enjoy the full benefits of all cultural and intellectual heritage of the world”, he stressed.