A new strategy to promote higher education training in the field of renewable energy across Africa has been unveiled. The roadmap was the outcome of a workshop in Rwanda from 10-11 July, organised by the European Union Energy Initiative and attended by participants from more than 20 African countries.
Kenya’s Higher Education Loans Board is to transform into a major ‘development financing institution for human capital’, with an expanded mandate to lend money to all students wishing to pursue post-secondary education in local or foreign institutions.
With publication of results of the baccalauréat school-leaving examinations in francophone Africa, newspapers in some countries have reported problems of low pass rates and instances of fraud.
In an effort to boost quality at French language centres in universities, HERACLES – the World Forum of Language Centres in Higher Education – plans to open a regional office in the Middle East to provide support services for countries including Egypt, Sudan, Djibouti, Lebanon and Jordan.
The professional body representing engineers has conceded to demands by protesting students of the JSS Academy, an Indian offshoot located in Mauritius whose qualifications were deemed invalid after the Indian government withdrew its recognition of diplomas awarded by Indian institutions abroad.
In an effort to provide quality higher education for students in countries on the horn of Africa, the University of Djibouti has launched an e-campus – placing it at the forefront of online learning in the region.
The Zanzibar Higher Education Loans Board will only sponsor 1,000 new students in the next academic year – down from 1,400 this year – because of lack of funds.
In Senegal, as in other African countries, men have taken the lion’s share of jobs in information and communication technologies. The independent Jjiguene Tech hub is the first institution in Senegal aiming to counter this male dominance by encouraging and training women to take up careers in the sector, according to a report from All Africa.
The recent ‘zero draft’ of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals document directly references the need to improve science and technology skills and capacity in developing countries, with developing country delegates to the UN hoping that those will not be sidelined or weakened in subsequent negotiations.
As joblessness rises across Africa, Ghana’s President John Dramani Mahama has identified the refusal of graduates to accept jobs they consider below their status as one problem that has to be solved if the dream of getting more graduates into employment is to materialise.
Tawfik Jelassi, Tunisia’s minister with responsibility for higher education and scientific research, gave an assessment of the sector for the previous 100 days, setting out progress and priorities including university elections, high graduate unemployment, and planned new institutions and research departments. Meanwhile, a report has found that women are under-represented in Tunisia’s highest university posts.
The Commission of the West African Economic and Monetary Union, known by its French acronym UEMOA, is offering support for higher education to member countries so they can achieve international standards. And a partnership between UNESCO and the Agence Universitaire de la Francophonie will develop educational ICTs in eight universities in UEMOA countries.
A network for Sudanese women researchers has been formed, to highlight the successes of women in science and to enhance their contribution to innovation and economic growth.
The University of Namibia has admitted its first batch of students into a new masters degree programme in gender and development studies, kindling hope of new solutions to gender-related problems that include violence in which scores of women have been murdered.
A US$2.6 million grant to support the training of postgraduate students in population sciences and public health in 10 universities across Africa has been made by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
Fifteen graduates of the digital Campus Numerique Francophone of Kinshasa have received their awards for successful online studies, including certificates for completing massive open online courses or MOOCs.
Zimbabwean prosecutors have charged 11 student leaders for breach of the peace or bigotry following protests held in the capital Harare in February. The trial has highlighted possible divisions between moderates and hardliners in President Robert Mugabe's government.
A law that allows the authorities of the University of Ghana to prevent people who are not members of the institution from entering its premises has come under attack on several fronts, after a booth was erected at the main entrance to control road use.
Student unrest has broken out in Burundi, where students went on strike over reform of their grant system. And in Cote d'Ivoire, students have been protesting over lack of housing - 18 months after universities reopened after two years of closure.
Nearly 100 staff at the University of Dar es Salaam have benefited from a German government-supported initiative to assist staff to obtain postgraduate degrees, as the institution pushes to improve the qualifications of its academics.
Senegal's higher education union SAES has written a letter of protest to the president of the World Bank, Jim Yong Kim, after the bank's country director claimed salaries of Senegalese lecturers were five times higher than those of academics in the United States, and called for them to be reduced.
Two animal rights and anti-vivisection organisations, the British Union for the Abolition of Vivisection and Animal Defenders International, have called on the Mauritius government to halt the export of macaque monkeys to laboratories abroad for experimentation.
Public universities in Benin were recently closed in protest against human rights abuses and corruption. The country's three academic unions joined an indefinite strike by civil servants that paralysed the public sector from late last year.
An alumni association has been launched by Botswana's newest private university, with the aim of linking its staff and students to the country's well-do-to resource-based economy.
A middle-level private college is set to make history in Kenya later this year when it transforms into a university – a first for a private college in the East African country.