- The Minister of Education wants universities to accept students with D7
- Dr. Yaw Adutwum believes this will give a chance to many students
- The cut-off grade of students applying to the university is C6
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Dr. Yaw Adutwum, the Minister of Education, has asked public universities to admit students with grades D7.
The cut-off grade for admission to public universities is C6, but the education minister believes such academic conditions instead deny students the chance of tertiary education.
"There are institutions that are saying we are not getting the numbers, but what happened to support students offering courses in diploma, electrical engineering and after that, you're going to see the numbers going up, and after that, they can go to work. And then, if they want to continue, they can continue. So we shouldn't see D7 as a barrier for students accessing tertiary," he added.
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Life in the university
When Hope Kpodo was growing up, he had dreams of a bright future like any other child, but life threw storms at him and yet, he has refused to throw in the towel.
From Keta in the Volta Region of Ghana, he was born and raised in a deprived home at Tema in the Greater Accra Region and has live there his entire life.
Kpodo has lived predominantly with his mother and two siblings, attending Anlo Senior High School (ANSECO) and university. His mother sold fish to cater for the family, and he recalls finances were hard.
During his final year in secondary school, he lost his father a week to sit for the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
Despite the odds, Kpodo excelled in the final exams. ''I was surprised I performed well after the results were released,'' he told YEN.com.gh, a victory that kept him pushing against the odds.
He had to resort to menial jobs to survive and help his mother cater for the family. However, the money of his job was not enough to afford him an education at the tertiary level.
''My grandfather bought me forms to apply to Regional Maritime University. I thought he would pay for the admission fee, but that was it. I had to work and save; I added my little savings to my mom's to pay for the fees when I got admission,'' he said.
During Kpodo's time at the Regional Maritime University in Accra, he grew increasingly frustrated due to financial constraints. He explained that his mother could hardly afford to pay his schools fees.
''It was a nightmare for the family anytime it was due for me to pay my fees. I almost dropped out of school in my second semester in the first year,'' he recalled.
Although there was hardly a turning point, he was determined to change the trajectory for himself and his family. ''I struggled throughout in school because finances were hard. I had to resort to repairing the footwear of students on campus to make ends meet. It was so bad I was allowed to eat for free at the school cafe.''
Overcoming the storms
Throughout the Covid-19 outbreak, lockdown, and return to school, he braved the odds and successfully graduated, joining other hardworking graduands on August 2, 2021, at the university to walk the stage.
On his Facebook page, Kpodo, aged 23, has shared a photo in his graduation robe with the caption:
''Mama we made it.''
But the rounds of financial difficulties are far from over, Kpodo needs to undergo mandatory training to obtain his discharge book, and with that, go to sea to begin his career as a qualified engineer.