A new salary deal has slightly slowed the brain drain from Senegal’s premier Université Cheikh Anta Diop in Dakar. But it confronts a new threat in the form of ageing academics. With 80,000 students, it faces losing 60% to 70% of academics by 2015 as a result of large-scale retirements.
Teachers at Senegal’s public universities have decided to resume classes while waiting for new President Macky Sall to settle into office and deal with urgent issues – but they are encountering problems doing their jobs because of disruption by school-leavers who have yet to sign up for courses.
Enhancing regional collaboration among universities through staff exchanges has the potential not only to improve academic mobility on the African continent but to enhance higher education quality and ensure rationalisation of existing capacity in Africa, according to Dr Moses Osiru, deputy executive secretary of the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture Secretariat.
Increased loan allocations to university and technical college students in Kenya are among key promises made by political parties in their manifestos, launched ahead of the elections scheduled for 8 August.
The creation of jobs for young people was as much a moral imperative as it was an economic imperative, according to Durban University of Technology Vice-Chancellor Thandwa Mthembu. In an interview with University World News, he called on universities to “think differently” about the kind of education they were giving their students. “What’s the value of a degree that can’t be used?” he asked.
An influential king in Western Nigeria has intervened in the ongoing controversy around the scrapping of management science courses in 25 federal universities of agriculture in a move aimed to correct what is perceived by the education minister as mission drift.
Information and communication technologies, and the internet in particular, hold enormous transformative potential for all levels of education in Africa, including higher education.
Well-trained journalists are integral to functioning democracies, particularly in Africa where some states are relatively young and others are still trying to shrug off the legacies of colonialism. To coincide with last month’s World Press Freedom Day on 3 May, University World News canvassed the views of a number of experts on the challenges facing journalism education on the continent.
African technical universities can help to add value to primary commodities and other natural resources, support economic transformation, provide technology solutions to small and medium enterprises, and contribute to wealth creation as part of enhancing technical and vocational education and training on the continent.
For Dr Samson Khene, a lecturer in physical chemistry at a South African university, the Africa Science Leadership Programme has opened his eyes to the power and responsibility of science to solve complex social problems.
Following what are widely regarded as racist attacks on Nigerian students in India in March, there are concerns that the violence could contribute to making the country a less attractive destination for African students seeking higher education outside the continent. Photo credit: BBC
The country’s academic community was an active part of the successful bid to stop the current president, Patrice Talon, from altering the nation’s constitution in order to arguably give more powers to the president and erode those of the judiciary and legislature.
The African Academy of Sciences, founded in 1985, aspires to shape the continent’s strategies and policies and implement key science, technology and innovation programmes. University World News spoke to its new interim executive director, Dr Thomas Kariuki, about how the organisation intends to drive scientific and technological development in Africa.
Greater university autonomy, credible appointments to governing councils, integrity tests for prospective vice-chancellors, and a holistic overhaul to stem systemic decay topped the list of recommendations contained in a strongly-worded statement released at the close of the recent third biennial conference of the Committee of Pro-Chancellors of Nigerian Universities.
The vice-chancellor of the University of Nairobi has asked the government to review the budgetary allocation to his university after the treasury failed to meet public universities’ requisitions for the forthcoming fiscal year. The total allocation to all public universities, which is US$200 million less than the amount requested, has dashed the hopes of several institutions facing a crippling cash crunch.
The president of the Somali National Commission for UNESCO and former Somalia education minister has called on her country’s fledgling national government and growing tertiary education sector to redouble its efforts to boost the presence of women in Somali higher education.
The 57 member states of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, 27 of which are in Africa, have adopted a declaration for promoting lifelong learning in universities, but implementation is still challenged by attitudes which position lifelong learning as the 'poor cousin' in universities.
In order to be sustainable, successful tertiary institutions around the world have found ways to diversify their income streams so as to reduce dependence on public funds which are often tied to economic and political factors. How can this work in Africa?
When Munya Mahiya, then a 15-year-old Zimbabwe schoolboy, had his left leg amputated above the knee in 2009 owing to osteosarcoma, a form of cancer, he feared that his mainstream high school would not take him back and he would miss out on a chance at a normal academic education.
Private firms and foreign agencies are breathing new life into Kenya’s technical and vocational training sector as the government seeks new initiatives to revive the troubled institutions to secure the critical skills-set needed to drive the country’s industrialisation ambitions. Photo: Xinhaunet
Academic libraries located in North Africa's universities need to join forces to form consortia or alliances in order to provide access to relevant information resources and services that meet the needs of higher education, according to international library experts interviewed by University World News.
At the start of 2017, a selection of scholars and experts share their views on the major trends expected to impact higher education in the Arab world’s 22 states, which includes 10 countries in Africa.
Students have been hard-hit by the country’s higher education regulator’s decision last year to close 13 university campuses which did not meet the required standards, an outcome attributed by university leaders to inadequate funding of a rapidly growing sector.
A continent steeped in conflicts and struggling to achieve development for its people should provide sustainable support for universities to help attain peace, says Paul Omojo Omaji, a professor of criminology and former vice-chancellor of Salem University, Lokoja in Nigeria. “Peace is priceless in any developmental equation.”
The recent licensing of eight new private universities has raised questions about the wisdom of expanding a sector already struggling to provide quality education geared towards the 21st century.