African Leadership University

African Higher Education Summit: Our Proposed Agenda

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]African Heads of State,  education thought leaders and sector stakeholders will gather for the African Higher Education Summit in Dakar, Senegal from March 10 – 12, 2015. According to The Africa Report, the conference, which is themed Revitalizing Education for Africa’s Future, will give leaders the chance to develop an action plan that will transform higher education in Africa over the next 50 years. Attendees include H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Chairperson of The African Union Commission and H.E. Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary General.

The topics on the summit agenda do not address or call for solutions to current problems in the education sector. At ALU, we believe that there is a need for new conversations on education – conversations that acknowledge the employer-employee skill gap, begin to tackle the 45% youth unemployment rate and encourage innovation and entrepreneurship. We asked our Youth Admissions Representatives to weigh in on issues that summit participants should be discussing. Here’s what they said:

  1. The failures of current higher education such as unemployment, drop out rate and high costs.
  2. Innovation in higher education through mentorship programs, MOOCs and vocational training.
  3. The ease of being awarded degrees or diplomas for people who are self-taught or take online classes as well as the smooth transfer of credits.
  4. The high cost of higher education and the sources of financial support available to students.
  5. Prioritizing the importance of advanced institutions for all the arts.
  6. Building a continent-wide network that coordinates study abroad programs.
  7. The need to provide conducive environments for the application of skills learnt or self-taught. This should include but should not be limited to enhancing policies on Intellectual Property and Patents to fit innovators, opening investment channels for start ups and encouraging youth entrepreneurship.
  8. The use of local media and local government to highlight the many opportunities that education can enhance.

What other higher education related topics should such an important forum be discussing? Share your thoughts in the comments section.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]