From April 24-26, University Council Chairperson Guo Yurong led a SUSTech delegation to Kenya to attend the Pan-African High-Level Conference on Education (also known as PACE 2018), jointly organized by UNESCO, the African Union (AU) and the Kenyan Ministry of Education. The SUSTech delegation also visited the United Nations Environment Program and the University of Nairobi.
Guo Yurong introduces SUSTech to Kenyan Minister of Education Amina C. Mohamed
The main participants of PACE 2018 were the Education Minister of 54 African countries, along with staff from agencies with the UN and AU, as well as staff from major non-government organizations, and leaders of the global education community. Participants shared their progress, experiences, and challenges of the SDG4 - Education, the Global Education 2030 Agenda, Africa Education 2016-2025 Agenda, and talked about how to promote the realization of the African Union 2063 vision.
On April 25, Amina C. Mohamed, Minister of Education of Kenya, made an opening statement for the Pan-African High-Level Conference on Education. Amina C. Mohamed welcomed the arrival of Guo Yurong and her delegation, expressing her gratitude to the Chinese government and people from all walks of life for their concern and support for Kenyan education. She also welcomed SUSTech to Kenya for further cooperation and educational exchanges.
SUSTech’s Director of Global Engagement OfficeHou Shengtao and Deputy Director of the Center for Higher Education Research Zhao Jianhua both delivered speeches at the “Digital Technology in Education” Chapter and the “Higher Education and Research” Subcommittee. They introduced the SUSTech and UNESCO Higher Education Innovation Center to their audience, along with innovations in higher education realized through information and communication technologies, and projects such as the Digital Education Partnership Program and Smarter Classroom.
The delegation held high-level talks with the director of the East Africa Regional Office of UNESCO Ann Therese Ndong-Jatta. The delegation also spoke at length with delegations from both the Ministry of Education Science and Technology and Sports of Uganda and the Ministry of Education of the Gambia. The director and the delegations were all invited to attend SUSTech in June of this year. A highly informative seminar took place about educational information technology applications in African universities.
On April 26, Chairperson Guo Yurong led a delegation to visit the headquarters of the UN Environment Programme. Founded in 1972, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), headquartered in Nairobi, Kenya, it is one of the only two UN agencies in the world that has headquarters in developing countries.
Guo Yurong presents school souvenirs to the Science Division of the UN Environment Programme
Guo Yurong introduced SUSTech’s characteristics and development to Liu Jian, UNEP’s Chief Scientist and Executive Director of the Science Division. Liu Jian expressed his appreciation for the speed and level of teaching and learning of SUSTech. He believes that SUSTech will surely become the frontier for innovation in higher education. Both parties hope to strengthen cooperation in scientific research cooperation, student internships, and forum cooperation. The SUSTech delegation also visited the Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations Environment Program. Deputy Permanent Representative of China to the United Nations Environment Program (Kenya) and counsellor Liu Ning welcomed the long-term cooperation between SUSTech and UNEP, saying that China is playing an increasingly important role in global governance and that it should become an active participant in international governance.
The SUSTech delegation also visited the University of Nairobi. The president of the University of Nairobi commissioned Xiao Shan, Dean of the Confucius Institute at the University of Nairobi, and Henry M. Mutembei, Dean of the School of Environment, to brief the delegation about the University of Nairobi. The two sides hope to strengthen cooperation and exchanges in such areas as education, scientific research, and student exchange.
SUSTech and the UNESCO Higher Education and Innovation Center have established cooperative relations with six universities in Africa and signed cooperation agreements with a further four universities. They plan to conduct joint research, scholarly exchange, student exchanges, joint training programs, staff training and a variety of other co-operations.
With the support of Weidong Cloud Education Group, SUSTech will develop smart classrooms and innovation centers through the Weidong Digital Education Bond Project. Co-operating with Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia, Ain Shams University in Egypt and Djibouti University, the smart classrooms will create a comprehensive learning management system, by expanding the available resources for educating students. These classrooms also facilitate the live broadcast of remote seminars or classes from the main campus to other campuses.
Original Text: Higher Education Research Center, Global Engagement Office
English Text: Chris Edwards/ Xia Yingying