27 April 2015 Register to receive our free newsletter by email each week
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Africa News
EGYPT: Trouble at university divides academics
When a group of lecturers pushing for the independence of universities in Egypt went to Ain Shams University, the country's second biggest public higher education institution, they did not expect to be chased by armed youths, spark campus protests and have a brush with the law. But that is what happened and the incident has divided the academic community.
KENYA: New university to help ease admissions crisis
A new institution called the East African University was granted an interim operating licence last week by Kenya's Commission for Higher education. The Ugandan-owned private university offers opportunities for thousands more Kenyan school-leavers to access higher education and should help ease a serious admissions crisis.
SENEGAL: Parliament debates higher education
Parliament has approved the budget for higher education, universities, regional university centres and scientific research - with the hope that prompt payment of students' grants through speeding up the banking process will avoid a repetition of strikes and disruption.
EU-AFRICA: Tap development funds for research
A senior South African diplomat has called on the European Union to consider the economic development created in Africa by research investments, when weighing overseas funding priorities.
ZIMBABWE: Academic vacancies in health still high
Zimbabwe's brain drain crisis is still at "unacceptable levels" despite recent efforts to redress its crippling effects, new figures released by a parliamentary committee have shown. Universities remain hard-hit.
DR CONGO: Private institutions get state approval
Confusion in the private sector of higher education over obtaining state ratification of staff grades has ended following evaluation by the Ministry of Higher and University Education, reported Le Potentiel of Kinshasa.
MADAGASCAR: Lecturers' union locks students out
Members of the university lecturers' and researchers' union Seces announced 'unlimited' strike action, locking all six universities, preventing students from taking examinations and withholding results of those who had already taken them, said press reports.
SOMALIA-CANADA: Forgiveness in scholarships
Eleven young Somali women, who did not have the means to go to university and who all want to use their education to help their troubled country, are on track to undergraduate degrees and attending classes this semester thanks to the efforts of a Canadian woman who had been brutally held captive in their country.
SOMALILAND: Government plans to plug brain drain
Somaliland's Higher Education Minister Zamzam Abdi Adan has suggested the need for a strategy to encourage students completing higher education studies abroad to return to home on graduation. The number of students attending foreign institutions is said to have soared in the past decade.
SOUTH AFRICA: A progressive higher education agenda
The focus of higher education in South Africa has been on policies and reforms and their impacts. What is sorely needed, says Adam Habib, Deputy Vice-chancellor of the University of Johannesburg, is engaged executives who critically reflect on their managerial experiences "leading to lessons that can advance a socially progressive higher education agenda".
AFRICA: Continent-wide data centre by next year
South Africa is spearheading activities to collect and curate research data about the African continent in an effort to shrug off its data-poor image.
ZIMBABWE: Manhunt for 'wanted' student
Zimbabwean police have launched a manhunt for a University of Zimbabwe student who faces the death penalty for allegedly plotting a coup against long-time autocratic ruler President Robert Mugabe in 2007. The student was previously released from prison when not tried within the required six months, but a judge has now said he is still a wanted man.
ISLAMIC STATES: Boosting higher education cooperation
The 57 member states of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference, or OIC, have adopted resolutions for promoting a culture of knowledge, scientific research and innovation, according to a declaration made in Kuala Lumpur in October.
EGYPT: Universities in fix over police removal
As advocates of university independence celebrate a landmark court ruling ordering the removal of police guards from campuses in Egypt, leaders of government-run universities are considering the costs of recruiting civilian guards.
NIGERIA: Universities hit by accreditation crisis
The withdrawal by Nigeria's National Universities Commission of the accreditation status of some academic departments in several universities, effectively closing many courses with immediate effect, is set to affect hundreds of students. The move has prompted universities to contemplate measures that would save them from further sanctions from the government regulatory agency.
KENYA: Major dispute could lead to lecturer strike
Kenya's 5,000 lecturers in public universities are locked in a major dispute with the government over the sacking of a union boss by one of the institutions and growing tribalism in employment in state universities. The tussle threatens to erupt into a strike next week, which could paralyse learning in the country's seven public universities.
AFRICA: Universities get US$130 million for health
The US recently announced awards worth US$130 million to universities in a dozen African countries that seek to train at least 140,000 health workers over five years.
KENYA: $12.5 million PEPFAR grant for Nairobi
The US government has extended a US$12.5 million grant to the University of Nairobi to boost medical training, potentially plugging the country's biting shortage of qualified health sector personnel. The funding will help strengthen medical training and increase the number of trained health workers in East Africa's biggest economy.
NAMIBIA: Parliament seeks partnerships with academics
The chief whip of Namibia's governing SWAPO party in the national assembly, Professor Peter Katjavivi, has called on academics to work with parliamentarians in select committees as the country moves to confront a myriad of social problems. He called for a multidisciplinary approach, given scarce resources.
BURKINA FASO: 'Solidarity' distance MSc in finance
People who have missed out on education have a new opportunity to catch up through a free distance education course in finance, under the 'Projet transmission solidaire du savoir' initiated by the French Euromed Management school in collaboration with Ouagadougou University.
AUSTRALIA: Monash denies Mugabe invitation
Monash University Vice-chancellor Professor Ed Byrne was forced to deny a Melbourne newspaper report last week that one of his senior executives at the university's South African campus had extended an invitation to Zimbabwe's notorious president, Robert Mugabe, to give a lecture to students at Monash's Johannesburg campus.
GLOBAL: Mugabe - Man of many degrees
Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe has been awarded a dozen or more honorary degrees from universities around the world, only to have at least three belatedly removed following widespread protests. Doubts have now surfaced whether he received an honorary doctorate last month from a university in Ecuador, or indeed whether it was bestowed by a 'bogus' bishop.
ZIMBABWE: Plans for two new private universities
Two new private universities are on the cards in Zimbabwe, and the projects have been lauded by the government in a country facing a critical shortage of human capital in various sectors of the economy.
SOUTH AFRICA: Initiative to strengthen liberal arts
The South African government has launched an initiative to revive and strengthen the social sciences and humanities in universities. A charter of recommendations, to be published in mid-2011, will put these oft-neglected areas back on the higher education agenda so that students who want a true liberal arts education can get a good one.
SOUTH AFRICA: University advances refugee rights
The rights of refugees in South Africa's Eastern Cape province are being safeguarded through a recently-launched refugee legal rights centre at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU) in Port Elizabeth. The goal is to assist foreigners seeking asylum.