University of Ghana inaugurates two modern facilities at Balme Library

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana Legon, Prof. Ernest Aryeetey on Thursday cut the tape to inaugurate two modern  facilities at the Balme Library on the University campus.

In a speech, the University Librarian Professor Elise Badu said a lot of challenges were taking place due to the growth in the number of students and that the Balme Library was set up to supply academic needs for the students to learn.

He said it was important for the university to undergo changes hence the provision of a “24-Hour Reading Room” located on the fourth floor of the Balme Library with a sitting capacity of 200. He added that these facilities would be supervised by trained security-men.

The other facility which was dubbed “Knowledge Commons” has about 150 computers which is located on the ground floor of the East Wing of the Balme Library.

Prof Elise added that the facility was a networked environment which incorporated many workstations that were equipped with software to support a variety of uses.  He said the Knowledge Commons had staff who could  support activities related to access to information and use of technology in the academic environment and that it was strictly for academic work.

The Guest Speaker at the function, Dr. Mrs. Helena Asamoah-Hassan, Librarian from the University of Science and Technology Kumasi, said Knowledge Commons was a relatively new concept adopted by libraries to bring back the teeming young people who were eager to learn and read in environments suitable to their tastes.

She added that in that environment they could put their information literacy skills to practice by locating, evaluating and selecting the information they needed, receiving professional and technical assistance and having at their disposal all what was need to complete their assignments.

She congratulated the management of the University of Ghana for blazing the trail with the  Knowledge Commons facility which features access to the internet, the online catalogue, journal databases, access to KEWL, MS Office software, typing tutor software, printing and scanning facilities.

Dr. Mrs. Helena Asamoah-Hassan urged the Balme Library to go further to provide a modern Research Commons, where Faculty, Researchers and postgraduate students will have a quiet environment which was also technology driven with all the facilities at the Knowledge Commons to access electronic space to also relax and have interaction with their colleagues.

A postgraduate student Mr. Edwin Adika explained that, the idea of establishing a Knowledge Commons for quality education for students by the university was a good decision.  He added that the initiative had come at a time when higher educational institutions across the globe were thriving to provide quality services to maintain and attract students to gain a competitive advantage in today’s education.

He appealed to the university to speed up the extension of wireless internet to the Graduate Hostels to facilitate research work.

In attendance included the immediate past Librarians from KNUST, Cape Coast, and University of Ghana including students, workers and alumni.

In another development, Professor Ernest Aryeetey opened a Job Fair behind the Balme Library which attracted commercial banks like the Barclays, Ecobank, Cal Bank, HFC Bank and the  Institute of Chartered Accountants Ghana.

Speaking to the GNA, Professor Aryeetey said the Job Fair idea was to give students of the University the opportunity to undergo internships with the participating firms.

Source: GNA

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