The Pan-African Doctoral Academy (PADA) at the University of Ghana (UG) organised the maiden virtual doctoral school beginning November 2nd to November 6.
The opening ceremony, chaired by Professor Nana Aba Appiah Amfo, Pro-Vice-Chancellor in–charge of Academic and Student Affairs of UG, was held virtually and witnessed by module facilitators, participants from countries including; South Africa, Ghana, Uganda, Mali, Kenya, and faculty members from UG.
PADA supports doctoral students and early career faculty with training, mentoring, career guidance and scholarship.
Its overarching goal is to increase the quality of PhD education in West Africa by providing complementary skills that are essential for the academic and career progression of doctoral students and new PhD holders.
The flagship programme of PADA is the doctoral school, which offers targeted courses on specialised topics and as well provide opportunities for interdisciplinary ad cross-cultural learning.
Applications were received from Universities in Albania, Mali, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Kenya and Ghana, whereas, all applicants were screened on IT Literacy as part of the admission process.
The November 2020 Doctoral School has two modules; “Managing the Doctoral Process (Including Literature Review), and Innovative Thinking in Research, Teaching and Learning”, with Prof Oheneba-Sakyi and Dr Nana Akua Anyidoho, as lead facilitators.
Prof Appiah Amfo, in her remarks, noted that the year was quite challenging but innovatively edifying, with the COVID-19 pandemic bringing about changes in the lives of people.
She said PADA had been organizing virtual seminars since April, which was geared towards motivating PhD students to continue to make progress with their research work in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
The Pro-Vice Chancellor anticipated that although the school was virtual, all participants would contribute their all to ensuring that the sessions were as interactive as they have always been in the past.
“I want to personally commend the PADA team for working tirelessly to ensure that the Doctoral students within and outside Ghana receive all the necessary support they need to be successful with their studies”, Prof Appiah Amfo added.
Prof Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu, Project Director, Building a New Generation of Academics in Africa (BANGA-Africa) said PADA was established as a result of concerns over PhD products in Africa and the issues were that PhD students produced in Africa were not competitive on the internationally.
She reiterated that one of the objectives of the programme was to enhance their ability to contribute to global knowledge generation.
Dr Collins Badu Agyemang, the PADA Coordinator, said every module had a technical crew and therefore urged all participants to confirm their full details with them.
He said it was mandatory for participants to attend all five days, adding that “if you do not attend all the five days you will not be eligible for certificates”.
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