Ahead of the upcoming 98th graduation and convocation exercises of the University of Liberia (UL), the administration has undertaken several activities.
As the first of these activities, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf last Monday broke ground on the UL Fendell Campus for the construction of 96-bedroom dormitories costing about US$2.3 million for the A. M. Dogliotti College of Medicine.
At the groundbreaking ceremony, President Sirleaf reiterated her government’s commitment to ensuring an educated Liberian population. She noted that due to the importance government attaches to good education, it directed its Chinese grant to the building of the Fendell Campus of the UL in 2006.
Health Minister Dr. Bernice Dahn recounted numerous efforts by the government to secure funding for the new home of the medical school.
She said the dormitories will improve the living and learning conditions of medical students at the A. M. Dogliotti College of Medicine.
She said that the government has established a partnership with the University of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to improve pre-clinical sciences and faculty in-learning platform to connect the medical school’s students with the world.
Dr. Dahn said given the limited space and poor condition of the existing medical school, the government was able to secure through its partner, the World Bank, the US$2.3 million grant to construct the facility.
UL president Dr. Ophelia I. Weeks expressed happiness for the construction of the dormitories and hoped that a health science college would also be built on Fendell Campus in the near future.
Dr. Weeks lauded the government for helping the university to secure its Fendell land.
She revealed plans to build a university city, which according to her, will provide jobs for citizens in Fendell and surrounding areas.
World Bank Country Manager Larisa Leshchenko said the grant will cover the construction of two 48-bed dormitories and two classrooms to strengthen the learning environment at the medical school.
In a related development, the University last Tuesday inducted into its honors program 63 scholars for academic excellence.
Dr. Weeks encouraged the young scholars to always plan and remain disciplined if they are to maintain academic excellence.
“Planning and discipline will help you follow schedules and deadlines for registration. If you know that you want to be in school next semester, you have to plan ahead,” said Dr. Weeks.
She also used the occasion to admonish other students of the university to cut down on some of their activities and plan properly by saving money, noting that this will get them ready for the following semester.
The just ended honors program was the first under Dr. Weeks’ administration.
The Dean of Liberia College, Sekou Konneh, who was the keynote speaker surged the students to put God first in all that they do. He advised the students to take risks and positive adventures and have dreams with goals. “You must be consistent. Study with plans, organize your time and yourselves because planning is critical in anyone’s life,” he said.
The 98th commencement convocation began last Thursday at the Fendall Campus with an arts and crafts exhibition that will run up to December 15.
According to a UL release, various events have been scheduled for the seven undergraduate colleges, with today’s commencement for Liberia College being the first.
The release added that Teachers, Science, Agriculture, Business, Vocational, Engineering, and Health Sciences Colleges will follow from December 5 to 13.