Oil & Gas: KTU takes steps to fill gap for welders in sector

Vice Chancellor of Koforidua Technical University Prof Kofi Essumang

The Vice Chancellor of the Koforidua Technical University (KTU), Professor David Kofi Essumang, says the school intends to fill the welding skill gap for locals in the oil and gas industry by introducing best-fit programmes to equip students for the industry.

He pointed out that as part of the strategies, a Bachelor of Technology in Welding and Fabrication Engineering is being introduced to add up to existing courses run in the technical university.

Currently, the needed welding skills is been provided largely by expatriates in the country’s oil fields.

Local skills have been in dire need even though government policies had pushed for locals with skills to take up that opportunity.

The Petroleum Commission, which has the mandate to regulate, monitor and manage the oil and gas exploration, has made moves to ensure local content participation.

The popular welders are said not to have the scientific knowledge to fit in.

It has been over decade of oil production in the country.

Vice Chancellor Professor Kofi Essumang says his institution is ready to provide such skills to students in a four-year course.

“We are positioned to support the oil and gas industry for under sea welding. We use to have welders alright, but there is a critical need for scientific welders.”

He explained the urgency for which students must be skilled.

“We are positioned to support the oil and gas industry. We want to train the students. With time, we would let them learn how to swim so that once they are fully trained, they can go into full operation and weld.”

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Professor Essumang added, “These are the people that Ghana needs as far as the oil and gas industry is concerned. The reason being that you must weld to precision so that if it is to go through a tube, you don’t add plenty welding materials for it to block somewhere.”

The Technical University has a well-equipped faculty in readiness.

Recent cyber crime has also informed management of the school to run courses in cyber security crime under its Computer Science Programme.

It currently has a student population of over 10,000 and run 12 Bachelor of Technology Programmes and 20 Higher National Diploma (HND) courses.

By Yvonne Neequaye|3news.com|Ghana