Liberia’s President George Manneh Weah says his administration will do all it can to support the state-run University of Liberia (UL) to reach its full potential and become second to none. According to an Executive Mansion press release issued last week, President Weah who is also the Visitor to the University, assured UL administration and students on Thursday, 4 October that he would leave no stone unturned in ensuring that young people are provided the necessary learning facilities and environment that engender quality education.
He gave the assurance while launching the “Go-Live of the University of Liberia Automated Digitization System (ePortal)” on UL’s Fendell Campus outside Monrovia which is intended to reduce age-old registration rigors for students.
According to President Weah, making UL one of the best in the sub-region remains a top priority, adding that his government is committed to lifting the quality of education in Liberia to higher heights.Digitizing student registration process at the University of Liberia is part of the initial pro-poor development initiatives promulgated by Government early this year.The Government contracted an ICT firm to set up what is called the ePortal to ease the registration stress that students have faced for decades.
Registration at UL has been a source of frustration and commotion for both administrators and students.Launching the project, the UL Visitor indicated that the completion of the ePortal is indicative of his desire to transform the University into a modern learning institution.
He hails the digital system as very good for the students who have perennially agitated against what was normally seemed disorganized and at times chaotic.President Weah calls on the students to make use of the portal, reflecting on his own experience with digitized registration process as a student at DeVry University where he obtained undergraduate and postgraduate degrees.
“I had the opportunity to sit in a classroom in the US and when I went to register they put me on the computer for the first time,” Mr. Weah recalls.He furthers: “You know in Liberia, we are used to doing everything manually. So, they put me in a little room for five subjects. When I was finished with entering my registration information in the ePortal, I submitted but was still sitting, not knowing the information had gone already.”
In another experience, Mr. Weah says after a two hour-thirty-minute test, he sat for one hour waiting for his result.“Later, I got a call from downstairs and when I reached down, I met my students affairs teacher who handled my results,” he continues.President Weah used the occasion to call on UL students to use peaceful means to resolve issues instead of resorting to violent means.
He adds that the achievement could not have been possible had the students not sought dialogue with the government over an untidy registration process.He also thanked Dr. Ophelia Inez Weeks, president of the University of Liberia, for her courage in contributing to the process leading to the modernization of the University.
“With one understanding and cohesiveness, we can go ahead positively,” he says.
Also speaking at the launch of the ePortal, the UL administration hailed President Weah for responding to the needs of the entity.The UL administration says President Weah’s support which resulted into the building of an ePortal at the University did not only provide great relief to the students but also brought calm and order on campus.
“It is the first time we are transitioning from manual registration to digital registration. Our dream is to be among the 7th best universities in the region,” Prof. Varmah Blama says.The students of the University also thanked President Weah for the development which they described as relieving.A Liberian digital company, MWENTANA is the service provider for the UL ePortal Digitalization System.–Press release