A life-long Liberian educator, Dr. James Teah Tarpeh, presented a gift of assorted books to the Cuttington University Graduate School and Professional Studies in Congo Town, Monrovia, Liberia on Wednesday, July 16, 2014. According to the career educator, “the books are being loaned to the Cuttington Graduate School to upgrade the library and to further enhance the academic life of the students. This gift is intended to create an invitation for individuals and institutions to contribute to education in Liberia,” Dr. Tarpeh added.
Prior to the presentation, Dr. Tarpeh said Liberia has not made sufficient educational progress since independence, unlike its West African neighbors of Ghana and Nigeria. “Our nation started on the wrong trajectory of building a nation. The practice of Americo-Liberian and Native division is a part of that wrong trajectory.” He emphasized that any nation that does not forge a united front will find it difficult to excel educationally.
Dr. Tarpeh stated that Liberia lacks the opportunity and the leadership capability to move the country forward in achieving high levels of education and the furtherance of knowledge. He further indicated that if the people of any nation are not empowered educationally, they will not progress positively in life. He lamented that Liberians do not have respect for education and knowledge.
Dr. Tarpeh used the occasion to call on the Liberian government to invest in human resource development of instructors. But he did not stop with calling on the government. Our businesses should express their corporate responsibility to the nation by contributing to the development of teachers, instructors and educators. “Investment benefits should not go to few persons,” the educator added.
The 1963 graduate of the Cuttington University said Liberians should stand alongside and join in with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in her support educational growth of Liberia. He asserted that the President cannot do it alone. “She needs qualified Liberians who are committed to help her in setting us on the right educational trajectory,” he further noted.
Dr. James Teah Tarpeh is a former ambassador to the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Benin Republic, and Togo. He is the former vice president of Academic Affairs of the University of Liberia (1978-1984) and dean of the school of graduate studies at the Ibrahim Banbargida School of International Studies. Dr. Tarpeh’s commitment to our nation was demonstrated in the early days of the Liberian Civil Crisis when he was instrumental in initiating talks between the fighting forces.