The President who was Thursday launching inaugurating headquarters of Carnegie Mellon Africa, in Kigali Special Economic Zone under the Kigali Innovation City Project observed that since the reconstruction of Rwanda started after the 1994 Genocide against Tutsis, one of the greatly improved areas is education.
Carnergie Mellon University (CMU) opened doors in Rwanda in 2012 with 20 students, a population that has since grown to 196 from 19 countries.
Kagame said that Rwanda embarked on the reconstruction journey, the country was always challenged by lack of local required expertise that Rwandan students had to always be sent abroad to study from countries such as India, South Africa, Europe, and America among other places.
“As the country grows, we now have means and partners to build up the education system in Rwanda, so as to address the needs we had and no longer have to send people abroad for education,” Kagame said.
Kagame talked of the discussions that took place in the USA with the directorate of Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and how they supported the idea of bringing the university to Rwanda.
“Not everyone thought this project would succeed; some even thought is was a waste of time, but there were also many that supported the project and they put a lot of effort until it came through,” Kagame said.
President Kagame thanked the leadership of CMU for having trust in Rwanda and its leadership and all that played a part in getting the project completed including; MasterCard Foundation, Smart Africa and Africa Development.
The President of CMU Africa, Farnam Jahanian, thanked president Kagame for his good leadership that led to the success of Carnegie Mellon Africa project.
“The inauguration of this new building marks a great step for Carnegie Mellon in Rwanda and in the world. This great building will play an important role in promoting technology and engineering in the Kigali Innovation City project,” he said.
In the next ten years, about 800 experts in technology will have graduated from CMU Africa.
CMU-Africa is the first center of excellence to be located in Kigali Innovation City, whose goal is to drive Rwanda’s economic growth through digital transformation. With a major focus on the continent’s emerging knowledge-based economy, CMU-Africa’s graduate programs are educating future leaders who will use their hands-on, experiential learning to advance technology innovation and grow the businesses that will transform Africa.