AUGUST HISTORY THAT MAPS FORTH INTO THE FUTURE
Educating the heart, Mind and Spirit
By William S. KOMBIAN
The Spiritan University College
In the final scene of the movie “The Great Debaters” the Harvard Dean who introduced the debate between his university and the “small” Wiley College said that:
“no university, no matter how grand or Augustan its history, can afford to live in the past. So, in the spirit of tomorrow, I introduce to you, today, the debaters from Wiley College.”
This statement is as pregnant with meaning as it is practically relevant in our appreciation of what the Spiritan University College is made of.
Oh What Glorious History!
Foundation foundation foundation. That’s what makes great institutions. Who’s the founder of this sweet university? No one in particular but the Congregation of the Holy Spirit, Catholic Religious Order founded by a 24 year old French cleric in 1703.
Their members are popularly known as the Spiritans, this is why the university bears that lovely name.
This same Congregation founded the Duquesne University in Pittsburg in America, the first Catholic university in that land. As a matter of fact, the Spiritan University College is affiliated to Duquesne and offers MA Theology, and professors from Duquesne have been coming for lectures and their students engage in multiple exchange programs (I’ll talk about the courses offered there).
They have founded lots of such forward looking colleges and universities in Ireland and especially the mother country France.
Let me say that who the members of this special congregation is, informs the spirit that occasions the kind of education that is offered at SUC.
In keeping with the charism of their founders, they work in the most difficult places that no one else would accept to work and serve the poorest of the poor.
This is the reason why their fees and other charges are unmatched. Very low charges with flexible payment plans that makes students pay with ease (I’ve done an exposition on this too).
I don’t intend to and can’t even exhaust their grand history, but I mean to show what informed the formation of the university.
Given their over 40 years presence in Ghana they discovered a need and founded the university to fulfil that need.
They noticed that quality tertiary education was and still is becoming an avoidable luxury for brilliant students from very humble and poor backgrounds. So they put up this fantastic facility, with standards that everyone envies, and made it accessible to such students. But it’s not limited to only such students, it’s open to all students.
All their courses are structured to make their students stand out wherever they find themselves.
Here’s a brief history that informed the formation of the university, this same history informs academic life there. I’ll give you another writeup on how they’re positioning themselves for the future in ways that no other university does.
Its internationality and interculturality is a whole subject we shall look at so that you have a rounded idea on why you can’t miss the rare chance to study there.
The journey just started.
Looking for a great future, come build it at Spiritan University College.
It’s not only Spiritan in nature, it’s deeply Catholic too. I don’t need to say a word about the relationship between the Catholic Church and quality education.
So in the spirit of tomorrow, the Spiritan University College introduces you to your future today
© Kombian SOMTUAKA™
“Forming the Heart, Mind and Spirit”
INTERNATIONALITY AND INTERCULTURALITY
Why You Should Study at the Spiritan University College
For the purposes of this article, it would be good we consider the etymology of the word “University.” The word “university” is from the Latin universitas meaning “the whole, total, the universe, the world.” The Latin phrase universitas magistrorum et scholarium, translates: “community of teachers and scholars”, and gives us a sense of what a university is.
Presently, it is appropriate to look at it as a specialized “associations of students and teachers with collective legal rights usually guaranteed by charters issued by competent authority.” In short, it is a place for “total” or “universal” or “comprehensive” learning.
Today, let us find out what makes the Spiritan University College specially suited for that kind “total” or “universal” or “comprehensive” learning. Why is it the most lovely learning space? We look at the international and multi-cultural representation and nature of the most beautiful private university in Ghana.
How I wish all the year groups of the bigger SUC Alumni could take turns to tell us the composition of their classes relative to nationality, but then I will give you an idea of how international the university was in 2009 and even more so today.
The first year diploma and degree students of philosophy, sociology, economics, and business had students from Ivory Coast, Sierra Leone, Guinea Bissau, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Cameroon, DR Congo, Uganda, Burundi, Rwanda, and of course Ghana. In the senior classes, there were students from Togo, Benin and lots of other african countries.
Aside from the carefully chosen ghanaian professors, there are visiting professors from mostly Duquesne University – USA, from Ireland, France, Nigeria etc. The Chair and Head of Philosophy Department was from DR Congo and he was assissted by another Professor from Benin. All the other departments had lecturers from different countries.
These students and professors from different nationalities are from very different cultural backgrounds. Even those from same countries came from different ethnic/linguistic settings.
OH WHAT BEAUTY!
IT is so beautiful, so ennobling and intellectually rewarding to share same lecture auditoriums with students from french and Portuguese backgrounds, and being lectured by a professor from a francophone country who can speak Greek, Latin, Italian, German, and English.
Let me relate one very personal and touching encounter I had with my own mate Olivier Uwayezu from Rwanda. Here is a young catholic seminarian who lived under the unspeakable terror and faced the daily unimaginable horrors of the Rwandan ethnic genocide. One day I had a personal chat with him about what really happened. He opened up, gave me details no international media could fetch in the heat of the gruesome brutality, and even told me the hellish effect of this war on his own family. At a point, he opened his mouth but no word came out; the troubling sorrow of him recalling such gory experience froze him and robbed him of any word he could speak. Immediately I cracked a funny joke about some of the bad grammatical mistakes he made when he was studying English in Ghana, and that managed to get him laugh. Then we changed topic. Here, I got first hand information of the Rwandan genocide; information that you won’t get from anywhere.
Aside from this, the Spiritan University College consciously creates that very lovely space for everyone to express his culture in ways that enhance mutually beneficial learning. Can someone tell us about the “Afriki Week!”
Students of different secondary school backgrounds, different nationalities and cultures create that beautiful international and multi-cultural ambiance that conduces “total” or “universal” or “comprehensive” learning.
SUC’s very high concentration of seasoned professors, talented teachers, researchers and students, all from different nations and cultures come as one of the most beautiful elements that distinguishes the university.
What is holding these powerful elements of internationality and interculturality at the SUC? I would say it is a strategic blend of freedom, autonomy and leadership.
These elements have played to create an environment that fosters competitiveness, unrestrained scientific inquiry, critical thinking, innovation and creativity.
This is why the SUC is quickly responding to the demands of a rapidly changing global knowledge economy.
Welcome! Take your place and learn.
Spiritan University College is home
☆ Kombian SOMTUAKA
Having university education can guarantee a series of opportunities, but sometimes it can be hard to know which way to look first. Sometimes the best place to start is with the basics. What’s important to students? What motivates students? What do students want to achieve in life? What do students think about the purpose in life? It might feel a bit devastating, but this is what Spiritan University College stands to answer.
As an alumnus, Spiritan University College (SUC) has always been a unique institution and an innovator in higher education and lead the way in teaching students how to find their own meaning and purpose in life. At SUC, university education is more than getting a degree, but puts life purpose, positivity, wellbeing and happiness as the key driven objectives for students.
Teaching and learning is always pertinent at SUC; whether it’s related to academic work or extra-curricular activities. SUC does not only teach its students necessary workplace skills; it also teaches them about the importance of wellbeing, and suggests positive practices, including how to manage emotions, how to engage in the workplace, how to have positive relations with others and most disparagingly how to have meaning in life.
It has always been a privilege to pursue my first degree at SUC.