Technical Innovations Improve Education in Africa
The first high-speed Internet link between national research networks in Sub-Saharan Africa was launched last month when Zambia was linked up to South Africa by a cable passing through Zimbabwe. The link is expected to bring a wide variety of advantages and will be especially beneficial for the education sector and researchers in neighboring countries, who will now be able to link up to the network and participate in global e-learning opportunities. Read it here.
Boycotting Students Close University in Swaziland
Students protesting at Swaziland’s only state university have forced the university to close just eight days after the start of the semester. The boycott began over a dispute regarding scholarships the Swazi government was supposed to grant to students this year. Reports claim 700 people were granted places to study at Uniswa and other colleges in Swaziland but were denied scholarships. Read more here.
Senegal Makes Headway on Gender Equality
Senegal has been working through a historic shift of power that began last March, when the country’s 86-year-old president, Abdoulaye Wade, ceded electoral defeat to his popular rival Macky Sall. Not only has the country transitioned into a new president and new government, but now more women than ever are claiming their spot in public office. In fact, 64 of the 150 new representatives in the national assembly are women, a landmark step towards gender equality. Hawa Ba, Senegal officer at the Dakar-based Open Society Initiative for West Africa, says, “Having this record number of female parliamentarians is excellent not only for women in Senegal but in the entire sub-region.” Read more here.
Higher Education Rates Decline in Cuba
University enrollment in Cuba is down over 25 percent from last year, which has some officials worried. Many attribute the steep decline to the fact that Cuba is in the process of reforming their higher education system. The changes include tougher university entrance exams, encouragement for students to major in the agricultural and technical sciences, fewer enrollment places in the humanities, and more training outside of universities for technicians and skilled workers. Read it all here.