The Dean of the School of Graduate Studies (SOGS) of the University of Professional Studies, Accra (UPSA), Professor Goski Alabi, has advised students to look beyond academic achievements and develop their social skills to enable them to succeed in their respective endeavours.
According to her, the notion that the acquisition of certificates is the surest way to success is not always the case since there is life beyond academic achievements.
“There is life beyond first class. There are skills beyond first class. There are certain things which social skills could do for you, which mere paper qualification can never give you,” she stated.
Prof. Alabi was speaking at the maiden edition of the Management and Professionals Day of UPSA for final year management students in Accra.
She observed that most students thought their lives were going to change after graduating with their certificates and therefore would do anything, including cheating, copying and other foul means, just to pass their exams to acquire certificates.
“A lot of us think that all we are here to do is to get certificates and once we have that piece of paper our lives are going to be different when we graduate. But that is not it,” Prof. Alabi emphasised.
She mentioned four main skills that students needed to develop in order for them to be successful. They are personal development, acquisition of technical skills (human capital), social skills (relationship) and spiritual guidance.
“It gets to a time when you come to your weak end; when you need something to put your hopes and aspirations on, and when that time comes you need something or somebody much larger than yourself and that is where God comes in,” she explained.
The Dean of the Management Faculty, Dr Abednego Okoe Feehi, said the rationale for the event was to bring together professionals and students to interact and learn more on how to excel beyond the classrooms.
“This is part of a series of activities that we are putting in place to ensure that our students do well both in and outside the classrooms,” he indicated.
The Managing Director of the Graphic Communications Group Limited (GCGL), Mr Kenneth Ashigbey, who spoke on “facing your career with confidence” said it was important for students to have career objecives, develop requisite skills, build resilience and uphold integrity.
He also stressed on the need for young graduates to have mentors with relevant experience in their chosen career paths to serve as their yardstick and guiding light.
“Normally, establishing a good, wide but carefully selected network will help you find a mentor. Look for integrity in your mentor, one who will not compete with you or steal your ideas. He or she should be able to say it as it is, because he or she does not want anything from you,” Mr Ashigbey stated.