The Management of the African Regional Postgraduate Programme in Insect Science (ARPPIS) have organised a durbar on May 12, 2022 for Students, Alumni and Faculty to provide updates, solicit feedback and share information on the Programme on the past, present and future. It was on the theme “Insect Science, Technology and Innovation System: Exploring Transdisciplinarity”. The durbar, held at the forecourt of ARPPIS, afforded the opportunity for interaction amongst Students, Alumni, Faculty (past and present) and Staff. 
The Coordinator of ARPPIS, Dr. Ken Okwae Fening, in his introductory remarks, indicated that insects could be our friends and also our foes, in that there are both beneficial and harmful insects we need to manage to ensure a better world. The harmful insects and other arthropods pose a big threat to human and animal health as seen in emerging vector-borne tropical diseases, the qualitative and quantitative losses on food and fibre attributable to insect pests’ attack. However, there are beneficial insects that pollinate crops to increase yield, hive products (e.g., honey, beeswax,) obtained from honeybees, silk fibre obtained from silk-producing insects, aesthetic value of butterflies, insects as food and feed for humans and livestock, among others.

To effectively manage both the harmful and beneficial insects/other arthropods, it is important for an appreciation of the biology, ecology and behaviour of these insects   on one hand, and the perceptions and constraints of the rural and urban communities as users of new strategies/technologies on the other. He expressed appreciation to all Senior Faculty for making time to attend this important event. In line with the vision of ARPPIS to develop the facility into an African Institution of excellence and a world class resource centre for teaching, learning, research and delivery of extension and other support services in Insect Science and related fields, he disclosed that the expectation is to run employment oriented and demand-driven courses, including terminal degrees, in specialized areas for the benefit of all stakeholders using the transdisciplinary approach. On this note, he solicited the active participation and support of Management, Faculty, Staff and all stakeholders to work effortlessly to make this a reality.


Speaking at the event, the Chairman, Prof. Boateng Onwona-Agyeman, Provost of the College of Basic and Applied Sciences hinted that Management had taken a strategic decision to continue to provide financial support to ARPPIS to promote the training of Entomologists at the postgraduate level. 

Also present at the event were the Deans of the School of Agriculture, and School of Biological Sciences, Prof. Irene S. Egyir and Prof. Augustine Ocloo; the two Schools that are jointly managing the ARPPIS Programme. The collaborating Departments are Animal Biology and Conservation Science (under the School of Biological Science) and Crop Science (under the School of Agriculture). Prof. Irene Egyir, in her keynote address, reiterated the cross-disciplinarity of Insect Science, using her academic experience as example and the impact studying an insect-related course have had on her as an Agricultural Economist. She added that the key intent is to make ARPPIS more visible within the West African region and more importantly, to be more proactive in addressing both national and sub-regional insect related issues. It is hoped that ARPPIS would be made a stand-alone Centre in the nearest future.

Management plans are in place to refurbish the facility to give it a facelift to enhance its service delivery.
Other Senior Faculty, Staff, Students and Alumni present at the event who took turns to share their experiences and encouragement included Prof. J.N. Aryeetey, Prof. Kwame Afreh-Nuamah, Prof. Daniel Obeng-Ofori, Prof. Rosina Kyerematen, Dr. Millicent Cobblah, Dr. David Wilson, Rev. Dr. W.S.K Gbewonyo, Professor Vincent Eziah, Dr. Fred Aboagye-Antwi, Dr. Samuel Adu-Acheampong, Dr. Richard Adu-Acheampong, Dr. Silas W. Avicor, Dr. Michael Osae, Dr. Felix Appiah, amongst others. The Alumni emphasized that they would provide the needed support to promote strong collaboration between ARPPIS and the Insect Science related industry as well as with other Science fields. 
There was a poster session that showcased the intellectual outputs of Students, Faculty, and collaborative efforts. Prof. Rosina Kyerematen and Rev. Dr. W.S.K. Gbewonyo gave the opening and closing prayer, respectively, and the programme ended with a cocktail/party and networking amongst all present. 
The MC for the day was Mr. Joshua Baffoe-Ansah
The African Regional Postgraduate Programme in Insect Science (ARPPIS) was initiated on the recommendation of the Academic Board of ARPPIS based at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE) in Nairobi, Kenya. It is a collaborative network project involving ICIPE, Kenya, some African universities as well as donor agencies for the training of Insect Scientists with the aim to solve the numerous insect pest challenges in Africa. The Programme is administered in the University of Ghana as an inter-school course between the Schools of Agriculture and Biological Sciences, both constituents of the College of Basic and Applied Sciences. It has for the past 30 years provided a platform for the training of entomologists at the Masters’ degree level including non-West African countries. Beginning from the 2015/2016 academic year, the programme has been expanded to include its first enrollment for PhD training in Entomology. Currently, there over 16 full and part-time professional Entomologists, Chemical Ecologists, Molecular Biologists, Toxicologist, Geneticists, Agronomists and Animal Scientist as well as some 20 other Entomologist and Researchers from partner institutions and other national institutes and agencies. Since its inception, it has trained 249 MPhil students 22 PhD students, a total of 271 students.



 ARPPIS would continue to collaborate with ICIPE and draw on its pool of Scientists for logistical support, teaching and thesis/research supervision. Other National/International Institutes/Agencies collaborating with the Programme with the provision of experts in teaching, supervision and student examination are as follows:
•    Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, UG, Legon
•    Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)
•    Oil Palm Research Institute (OPRI), Kusi, Kade/ER
•    Crop research Institute (CSIR), Kumasi
•    Savannah Agricultural Research Institute (SARI-CSIR), Tamale
•    Water Research Institute (WRI-CSIR), Accra
•    Biotechnology anmd Nuclear Agricultural Research Instutute (BNARI), Kwabenya, of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission
•    Cocoa Research Institute Institute of Ghana (CRIG), Tafo
•    Quality Control, COCOBOD, Tema
•    Plant Protection and Refgulatory Services Directorate (PPRSD) of the Ministry of Food and Agriculture (MoFA)
•    University for Development Studies (UDS), Tamale/Navrongo campuses