University of Ghana Renews MoU with Nestle Ghana Limited

As part of a strategy to strengthen student scientific expertise and build competences in the fields of innovation, research and development with a particular focus on food security, the Institute of Applied Science and Technology, has renewed its Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Nestlé Ghana Limited for the next two years.

At the brief ceremony, the Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs (ASA), Prof. Gordon A. Awandare on behalf of the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Nana Aba Appiah Amfo in his remarks expressed delight at the renewal of the MoU and said, “The University will continue to build more industry partnership to give practical training to students”. “The University of Ghana wants to train students and tailor the needs of graduates to meet the demands of the job market”, he added.

According to him, the University is producing students who are ready for the job market, so they need adequate skills from industry in order to be adaptable in the working environment. Prof. Awandare also indicated that the MoU is in line with the University’s vision of becoming research-intensive, whilst providing avenues for its graduates to meet the demands of industry players. 

Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Academic and Student Affairs (ASA), Prof. Gordon A. Awandare

Prof. Awandare expressed appreciation to Nestlé for expanding the scope of the collaboration a notch higher to involve a number of academic units of the University including the Schools of Biological Sciences, Agriculture, Engineering Sciences, Business School, Careers and Counselling Centre and the Office of Students with Special Needs. He further indicated that this collaboration will inure to the benefit of both institutions and called on other corporate organisations to partner in the training of students.

Mrs. Céline Worth, R&D Program manager of Nestle, in a statement, noted that it is important to work effectively to shape students for the future and emphasised the necessity of studying assiduously to be fit for purpose. Mrs. Worth stated that it is important to collaborate in resource and knowledge in order to have a firm grounding in the value chain of the food industry. “We have to relate to the fact that today humanity is facing unprecedented challenges. We have been through the COVID times and now we have the war that has consequences globally and in the food industry. This is putting pressure on the whole value chain. The only solution is that we are pulling together resources and knowledge to build together so that is why this partnership is important for us,” she said.

Céline Worth, R&D Program manager of Nestle

She said, “Students who have on-the-job training, getting into the network of industry learn very fast. So, we see very encouraging progress in this programme”. She indicated that the strong partnership is in line with Nestlé’s ambition to help ten (10) million young people worldwide to access economic opportunities by 2030 as part of the global “Nestlé needs YOUth” initiative. Mrs. Worth on behalf of the delegation expressed appreciation to Management of the University for the warm welcome.

In brief remarks, Mr. Tesfalidet Haile, Head of Nestlé Research and Development (R&D) Sub-Saharan Africa announced that the agreement will continue to open the doors of Nestlé’s global R&D network to students and staff of the University to strengthen their knowledge and build competencies in their various fields.

Additionally, Madam Deborah Kwablah, Corporate Communications and Public Affairs Manager, Nestlé Ghana Ltd, emphasised that the collaboration will continue to help students transition from education to the employment sector with ease, while promoting an entrepreneurial mindset.

Providing a brief background earlier during the Ceremony, Prof. George Oduro Nkansah, Director, Institute of Applied Science and Technology (IAST), noted that through industry engagements of the Institute of Applied Science and Technology, initial conversations between University of Ghana and Nestlé started in September 2018. 

He added that in 2019, further discussions led to the identification of areas that could be explored. Prof. Nkansah revealed that this was followed by a visit of the Nestlé team from Ghana, Cote D’Ivoire and Switzerland, where initial talks on areas of research were discussed. He cited food and nutrition, climate change, plastic waste management/recycling, packaging, agronomy, bioprospecting for food ingredients and Innovation Challenge Start-Ups as the  areas of research.

He further indicated that Nestlé Ghana has over the years provided internship slots and guided factory tours to UG students and faculty and through the MoU, engaged the Office of Students with Special Needs (OSSN) by sponsoring and organising two career fairs in 2021 and 2022 for students. Prof. Nkansah stated that during the peak of COVID-19 when Accra was grounded, Nestlé Ghana through IAST, supported scientists and staff of Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research with Nestlé beverages.

He added that in 2022, Nestlé Ghana brought the University of Ghana Business School on board and there is an on-going Nestlé-sponsored training of sales personnel by the UG Business School. 

In a brief statement, Prof. Boateng Onwona-Agyeman, Provost, College of Basic and Applied Sciences (CBAS), stated that the partnership is in line with the vision and mission of the University and College and stated that it is important to strengthen and sustain the partnership. He further indicated that graduate students exposed to such partnerships have more advantages when enrolled in industry and the job market.

Mrs. Claudia Naa Anorkai Akuorkor Abbey, Legal Officer and Mrs. Ama Pinkrah Sowatey, Assistant Registrar the Office of Legal Counsel facilitated the signing of the MoU by both parties as well as the presentation of the signed MoU.

Mr. Worlanyo Newton Torvinyo, Acting College Secretary, CBAS, delivering the vote of thanks extended appreciation to the leadership of the two institutions for ensuring the renewal of the MoU. “We are of firm belief that the parties will continue to execute their obligations under this MoU with strict adherence to ensure that the objectives of the MoU are realised,” he stated.

The Ceremony was facilitated by Mrs. Elizier Ameyaw-Buronyah, Director, Public Affairs Directorate (PAD). Also present were members of the Nestlé Academic Board: Prof. Matlida Steiner-Asiedu, Prof. Firibu Kwesi Saalia, Dr. Henry Ofosuhene Sintim and Dr. Sharon Afrifa. Also present were Prof. Augustine Ocloo, Dr. Niilante Amissah, and Dr. Emmanuel Essien

The rest were Mr. Daniel Hormeku, Senior Assistant Registrar, CBAS; Mrs. Joana Korlekwo Omaboe and Mrs. Mavis Osafo Adu, Assistant Registrars, PAD; Mrs. Barbara Dodoo-Arhin, Assistant Registrar, West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI) and Mr. Bright Avuglah, Assistant Registrar, IAST. 

The Nestlé Ghana Limited delegation included Mr. Franck-Philippe N'Dia, Innovation Manager and Mrs. Sophia Benson, Human Resource Manager.


A group photo after the signing