Chancellor of Perez University College, Bishop Charles Agyinasare, has encouraged and challenged graduands of the school to be entrepreneurial and find profitable solutions to the numerous problems confronting Ghana and Africa rather than complain about lack of jobs.
Speaking at the university’s sixth congregation held at the Perez Dome in Accra on Saturday, 10 March, on the theme ‘The Entrepreneurial University: A Model University for the 21st Century’, the founder of Perez Chapel International, told the graduands that: “I assure you that there is currently no draught of problems in this country and continent, so your services will certainly be needed.
“With the number of needs we have, stop lamenting the high rate of joblessness, and instead be an entrepreneur!”
Read Bishop Agyinasare’s full speech below:
Honourable Guest Speaker Prof Omane Antwi, Governing Council, Rector, Nananom, Ministers of religion, Vice Chancellors, presidents of mentoring institutions, presidents present, registrars, deans, HoDs, faculty and staff, graduands, friends from the media, ladies and gentlemen, all protocol observed.
Thank you all for coming.
Our theme for this congregation is the Entrepreneurial University
The dictionary definition of an entrepreneur is “one who organises, manages and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise to make profit”. Even better, an entrepreneur is someone who sees opportunity in a need, and provides a profitable solution to that need.
We live in a time when many people are graduating from our institutions but there are no jobs waiting for them.
The inventors and entrepreneurs who have done exploits in their generation, were all people who were confronted with situations and had no choice but to come up with a solution to the problems that confronted them.
Scripture assures us that there is no problem or test from which God will not make a way of escape (1 cor 10:13).
For those of us who were colonised and made to think that good things could only come from the white man, we were taught to drink tea in our hot weather, made to wear suit even when the sun is hot, made to make English our national lingua franca. Where white signifies good and black evil. Psychologically, it has created the tendency to think that we cannot do anything for ourselves.
In school, the inventors we read about are mostly white coloured people. The question, therefore, arises whether there had not been any black people who had solved the problems of their day.
Let me just present you with a few black inventors. Dr Daniel Hale Williams, a black hospital owner in Provident, USA, who, on July 10, 1893 was confronted with a man James Cornish, who had a stab wound to his heart, decided to do open heart surgery in order to save his patient. According to the book “Black Scientists and Inventors”, by Michael Williams, “Doctors in those days would not even attempt to save the victim, as it had never been achieved successfully, but Williams decided he could try to save the man … With a team of six other surgeons, he embarked on the world’s first open heart surgery. They discovered the pericardium had been punctured, he repaired and sutured the chest opening. After 8 weeks in the hospital, the patient fully recovered.”
Another great thinker is Ghana’s own Apostle Dr Kwadwo Safo, who had only technical school training from Ghana Technical Institute, Kumasi, and no advanced education in electronics. But this man could generate ideas to fashion products with his hands. He has made electric guitars, televisions that are operated by human voice, cars, and trucks, to name a few.
Albert Osei, the CEO of Koko King, was an established banker with the Royal Bank of Scotland. He came back to Ghana to start something. Naturally, he should have gone into the financial sector. However, he saw the need to package breakfast. In 2008, he started Koko King with 20 meals from the booth of a taxi. Today, the company sells from over 100 locations, in Accra, Tema and Kasoa.
My precious graduands, today is your day. Let me be the first to say, “Congratulations!” On this occasion of your graduation, I want to challenge you to be entrepreneurs. Although an entrepreneur basically sees and solves problems or needs, like I mentioned before, the truth is, there is a bit more work between the seeing phase and the solving phase: an entreprenur must be able to think, think and ideate about various possibilities of solution; he must also take risks, risks that his contemporaries or potential competitors may be unwilling to take; he must be diligent, not idling about, but working assiduously to see his idea go from being theoretical to being tangible; and the entrepreneur must be persistent, persistent to ensure that no matter what, he will succeed, even if it means failing so many times.
I assure you that there is currently no draught of problems in this country and continent, so your services will certainly be needed. With the number of needs we have, stop lamenting the high rate of joblessness, and instead be an entrepreneur!
According to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Raymond Obstfeld in “What Colour is my World? The Lost History of African American Inventors”, “no one invents anything by themselves, in truth, all inventors only improve on what’s come before them. They should be called innovators rather than inventors. Inventing is like standing in a bucket brigade. People stand in a line that stretches from a water source to a fire, and they pass buckets of water up the line. The last person in line throws the water on the fire and gets all the credit for putting out the fire. Inventors are like the people in that line, each one contributing, but the one who throws the water gets the credit as the inventor”.
You have been privileged to be in an institution whose church was founded in Ghana without any external or western support, in very extreme conditions, but which is currently in many nations and has championed many things. Therefore, go out there and do something with your life. Be innovative and creative.
To the families of the graduands, I say, encourage your wards to be all that they have the potential to be. Don’t be too angry if they take a risk to start an enterprise with a bit of the money you would give them. After all, you are expected to be the first to believe and invest in them. And give them moral support for the long haul.
To the staff, I say well done for investing your time and knowledge in these young ones who will solve the many challenges we have been faced with in this nation.
Once again, congratulations to you all! Rise up and make your life count.
Thank you and god bless.
About Perez University College
Perez University College was started as a Bible College in September 1992 in Tamale, Northern Ghana by Bishop Agyinasare.
It was then called World Miracle Ministerial College (WMMC) and later Miracle Ministerial College (MMC) when it was relocated in Accra when the founder moved in 1994. In 2013, the institution’s name was changed to Perez College (when the Church’s name was changed to Perez Chapel) with authorisation from the National Accreditation Board.
On November 15, 2015 Perez Chapel International acquired Pan African Christian University College, the first accredited private University College in Pomadze-Winneba, in the Central Region of Ghana. It is located off the Swedru-Winneba highway, about a kilometer or five minutes’ drive from the Winneba roundabout. Despite its close proximity to Winneba in the Effutu Municipality, administratively, it falls under the Gomoa East District Assembly. Currently, Perez University College has two schools: School of Business (SOB) and School of Theology (SOT).
The vision of Perez University College is to be a Top Class Christian Entrepreneurial University that has Local, National and International influence.
Perez University College (PERUC) is devoted to training students to be critical thinkers, morally sound, entrepreneurial in outlook and able to provide solutions to societal challenges.
Faith – faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour and faith to move the mountains of society.
Honesty – honesty that distinguishes our students and staff from the multitude of un-ethical leaders in society.
Excellence – a touch of excellence in the quality of education and academic leadership that is provided.
We maximise your God-given potential for dedicated service to transform society.
Raising effective leaders to impact their generation.