The National Film and Television Institute (NAFTI) is to be elevated to the status of a University College of Media and Creative Arts, to provide professional training to support the growth of the media and creative arts industry in Ghana.
The Rector of the NAFTI, Prof. Linus Abraham, who announced this at the 18th matriculation ceremony of the institution, described the planned transformation as a “great achievement.”
That, he said, was because management had been fighting for a university status for many years, explaining that, “the transformation is intended to revitalise the institute and make it more relevant and germane to the development of the media arts economy as a viable area of growth for Ghana.”
Seventy-four new students were admitted to the institute to study various programmes.
With their new status, Prof. Abraham said, NAFTI would continue to have film and television training as its core, but would provide training at undergraduate and graduate levels in areas such as graphic design, production design, photography, animation, multimedia production among other programmes.
Considering the opportunities in the creative arts industry, he indicated that it had become necessary for the establishment of comprehensive media arts colleges and universities that recognised convergences and cutting-edge technological developments.
“NAFTI as a Media and Creative Arts University will better serve the ever-growing convergences in the creative and media arts industry in the country,” the Rector added.
Prof. Abraham advised the matriculants to be disciplined, obey the rules and regulations of the school and position themselves to enable them to start up their own businesses after school.
The Editor of the Daily Graphic, Mr Ransford Tetteh, who was the special guest at the ceremony, said media convergences offered various opportunities to industry players.
He said it was for this reason that the Graphic Communications Group Limited (GCGL), noted for the production of different brands of newspapers including the Daily Graphic, wanted to venture into television production.
“The new digital and telecommunication technologies facilitates a global reach that was previously impossible. Take full advantage of the new media technological facilities at NAFTI to enhance creativity and reach into the global digital media environment,” the editor advised the students.
Mr. Tetteh further urged the students to consider NAFTI as a platform to achieve their dreams, a vehicle for structural transformation as well as mechanism for improving the competitiveness of their talents.
“You must take your studies seriously and take advantage of the expansion and dynamism of the creative arts industry to diversify your creative intellect to cover other fields in the fast-growing and converging fields in the digital media,” he said.
Mr Tetteh further advised the students to widen their scope of thinking, uphold intergrity and be disciplined.
A board member of NAFTI, Dr Awo Asiedu, urged the students to be disciplined, respect one another, trust in the Lord and work hard to fufil the purpose for which they gained admission to the instituition.
In his remarks, award-winning Ghanaian film-maker , Mr Kwaw Ansah, urged the matriculants to work hard and see themselves as important people who could make relevant contributions to the growth of society.