He delivered the message on Tuesday 18th October 2022 during an interactive session with students and teachers on his visit to the school located in Kigarama Sector of Kicukiro District in Kigali City.
“The UAE has put great emphasis in promoting science, technology and innovation in the education system and curriculum. One of the targets of National Agenda is that UAE students must be the best in the world in reading, mathematics and science.
This is something that I also wish for all of you, to be the best you can be in your science classes at your school,” said Amb. Alqahtani.
The Ambassador also took the opportunity to share the key initiatives put in place by the UAE in advancing education not only to UAE citizens but also to Rwandans.
Since 2002, the UAE through the Al Maktoum Foundation has supported Rwanda’s education by funding two secondary schools namely; the Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Girls Secondary School for Sciences in Muhanga and the Hamdan Bin Rashid Kimisange Secondary School which he has visited.
Students from these schools have been performing well in national examinations.
For the last 12 years, the UAE through the Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan Foundation has also been 100% supporting the Islamic Secondary School for Sciences and the Islamic Cultural center.
Within the framework of joint action in order to support the education sector in Rwanda, the UAE Government provided scholarships to outstanding students in different UAE universities, through the UAE Technical Assistance Program.
“The scholarship programs will enable the students to build a better future, and contribute to achieving development for their country and the local community,” said Amb. Alqahtani.
In 2018, 20 male and female students from Rwanda received UAE Government scholarships at the UAE University in the disciplines of Architecture, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Biology, Biochemistry, and Computer Science.
Among others, 10 Rwandan students were given full scholarships to pursue bachelor’s degree programs at Sorbonne Abu Dhabi University in 2019.
In consideration of the fact that education plays a critical role in knowledge-driven economy, Amb. Alqahtani commended students for excellent performance and reiterated his country’s commitment to provide scholarships to best performers in internationally recognized universities of his country.
The UAE has established an excellent and diversified system of higher education in a very short period.
The UAE University, founded in 1976, led higher education in the country. Since then, the UAE currently has more than 76 public and private institutions of higher education and they include universities, colleges and vocational and technical institutes, both local and international campuses, such as the Sorbonne Abu Dhabi University, New York University and American University of Sharjah.
It has been providing scholarships to Rwandan students who excelled in their secondary education at some of these public and private universities.
Maki Abdalla Ali Hamadian, the Country Director of Al Makhtoum Foundation Rwanda said that the organization did not only contribute to infrastructure development mainly in the education sector in Rwanda, but also paid tuition fees for vulnerable families and provided food relief among others.
He explained that the two secondary schools have graduated over 700 students of whom more than 150 were admitted to universities in Rwanda while 60 were supported to pursue studies abroad.
Among others, 15 students were fully supported by the foundation and completed secondary studies.
The schools offer education from the lower to the upper secondary school with a focus on science courses in the combinations of Mathematics, Chemistry and Biology (MCB) as well as Mathematics, Physics and Geography (MPG) but the foundation plans to introduce technical courses to contribute to holistic, social and economic transformation.
During his visit to Hamdan Bin Rashid Kimisange Secondary School for Sciences, Amb. Alqahtani toured different facilities including a laboratory, computer lab and awarded a senior 5 student who exhibited outstanding performance with a laptop.
The Head Teacher of the school, Valens Safari thanked the ambassador for the gift which he considered a motivation for other students to work hard, so long as they have witnessed that hard work pays off.
Students thanked the ambassador for paying them a visit and got an opportunity to ask questions of curiosity.
Photos: Igirubuntu Darcy