By: Stephen G. Fellajuah
MONROVIA – The 2022 Graduates of the BlueCrest University College have been encouraged to use the knowledge acquired to help develop Liberia and to recognize that the country depends on their knowledge to achieve vision 2030, saying it is only they that have the power to take the necessary action to alter and change the nation’s development course.
Speaking at the 6th graduation convocation exercise of the institution on Saturday, October 22, 2022 at the Dominion Church, Congo Town, Dr. Upjit Singh Sachdeva, a former Honorary Consul General of India in Liberia, affectionately called “Jeety” who served as Keynote Speaker of the occasion said the graduates have the power to begin to research, analyze and create digital solutions or software to solve the myriad of problems besetting Liberia.
“You have the power to effect change. Therefore, do not say, ” I’m afraid to fail.” Those who face challenges, learn to innovate, and stay afloat. This is the secret of my success as a businessperson. Know this: Liberia needs people who will not seek the easy way out, but those who will dare to drive change amid uncertainty”, he said
At the graduation exercise where 63 persons passed out from disciplines, most in the area of Information Technology “Jeety” stated that Liberia is behind the technology revolution, adding that is why he was excited to celebrate these graduates that have taken a bold step to venture into a career area that is most needed in Liberia at this time as he encouraged them to get involved with businesses, each person bringing a different piece of the technological puzzle.
“At this incredibly young age, it is not lost on me that you would have fears about venturing into entrepreneurship. I understand. Your fear is not misplaced, especially at a time when Liberia and the rest of the world are more volatile, and uncertain. However, let me caution you to not let your fear paralyze you into doing nothing. You have acquired the knowledge and have the ability, so explore — be daring. You can make the difference”, he further motivated.
“Liberia has just eight more years to accomplish its goal of becoming a middle-income country, according to the country’s vision 2030 plan. You will agree that we are a long way off and chances are that if we do not all work harder and smarter, we might not achieve this goal. But I am more optimistic, that with exciting new talents like you, the vision 2030 goal is within reach..
The future is yours to shape — with the force of your will – and your intellect, I am certain of a better future for Liberia, a country that is my home. I have lived in Liberia for more than three decades, so I know what I am speaking of. I have lived my whole adult life in Liberia; therefore, I am a Liberian by heart and an Indian by nationality, he added.
He explained that Liberia today did not just happen. “The outgoing generation of this work hard to bring it this far, now it is the younger generation’s turn as no matter what, they have to face these challenges but do so with unwavering dedication. In such a way, they can make a specific contribution to Liberia”, he said.
The renowned businessman and humanitarian told the graduates they are capable and he could not think of a better place to look for such people than right here at BlueCrest, stressing as tech graduates, they must consider what the country needs and then work to make it a reality as he urged them to start thinking about how they might serve their nation.
“It could be an idea that improves public transport, or health management software that enhances the healthcare delivery and the quality of life or a platform that promotes the beauty of Liberia to the world through tourism, to expand the country’s economy.
“You could also build a web-based platform that connects farmers directly to consumers in order to enable farmers across the country to have access to the market directly while accessing reasonable prices for their products. You can also do similar for stores selling construction materials: You can create an e-commerce platform that connects them directly with consumers. Better still, an app that provides music therapy to sick and elderly Liberians”, he said.
The Indian business tycoon whose humanitarian services to the country has changed the fortune of the Monrovia Central prison through massive infrastructural works and food assistance program emphasized that it is the responsibility of the graduates to harness the power of technology to help Liberia achieve vision 2030, saying “if you are frightened by failure, then you will not invent anything that would lead to change.
“But when we rise to the challenge, we can drive change. The opportunities and means at the disposal of your generation are far greater than were available to mine. You are connecting in ways that were not possible before … The connections are what make you stronger. If you are awake, you are online … do not take that power for granted. Leverage it”, he said
Moreover, he says “If we look into your surroundings, there are enormous examples of Liberians who muster the odds and are now contributing positively to the socio-economic growth of Liberia. You can do the same. So, I implore you to do the same. Develop that resolve and start with just an idea, it could grow into something big. Considering this perspective, you will discover your position to contribute towards the betterment of Liberia — recreating it in your own image. Make the Liberia you envision a reality”.
He further encouraged them to look forward and help Liberia achieve the vision 2030 by becoming a middle-income country – a country that will become fully integrated into the bold new technological world.
Also speaking at the well attended event, Dr. Umesh Neelakantan, President of BlueCrest University College, said the higher institution in Liberia has been able to bring radical thoughts for more than three thousand learners as of date through the opportunities created dominantly via information technology, adding that since 2014, BlueCrest has imparted a mindset of progress among learners through different portfolios in Information technology.
He said it has evolved into advanced status of learning portfolios like Cloud computing, Cyber security, advanced Software programming, advanced Networking platform, Health Analytics, Data Science, Machine Learning and Deep learning technologies, big data analytics and many more.
He narrated that the world has progressed and will progress by integrating information technology into all personal, professional and social endeavors, stressing that every decision as of date is based on faster information, realized assessments, valuable judgments and authenticated inferences. He said new generation of thoughts are vital and no one can ignore or neglect the pace of young generation adding that there has been a radical shift in learning paradigms and pragmatic portfolios are dominating worldwide and that there will be no more constrained or secluded status for younger generations to think “what to study, where to study” etc. because opportunities are immense.
“We are hopeful that formalities for higher education in this blessed country will move much faster and by having great people at the helm of affairs, higher education will transform the necessities as prerequisites for every interested learner ahead”, he said.