Rwanda’s Kigali on Tuesday launched operation of four education centers of excellence financed by the World Bank with the hope of strengthening research and higher education in Rwanda and the region.
The centers of excellence are in the areas of Energy for sustainable development, Internet of Things, teaching and learning mathematics and science and data science, according to Nelson Ijumba, deputy vice chancellor of Academic Affairs and Research at the University of Rwanda.
The centers are expected to enroll over 3,500 students mainly through scholarship to pursue post-graduate studies in regional development priority areas, including over 700 PhD students with more than 1,000 female students, according to officials.
Rwanda was selected to host the centers after winning stiff competition against about nine countries.
The World Bank committed 20-million-U.S.-dollar grant to run the centers for the next five years.
Speaking at the launch, World Bank Country Manager for Rwanda Yasser El Gammal said the centers will be expected to raise revenue for self-sustainability in the future.
The centers are expected to publish 1500 journal articles and 500 research papers in collaboration with the private sector and other academic institutions within and beyond the region, he said.
It is believed that skills, capacities and research are needed to sustain rapid economic growth of the region.
Permanent Secretary in Rwanda’s education ministry Celestin Ntivuguruzw, said the centers will strengthen the system of research and higher education in Rwanda and beyond.