A delegation of five from Campus France, the French national agency for the promotion of higher education, international student services, and international mobility, paid a working visit to the Addis Ababa University (AAU) on the 14th of January, 2016.

The visit aimed at exploring potential areas of future partnerships and collaborations for mutual benefits.

AAU’s Academic Vice President, Jeilu Oumer (PhD), along with Zenebe Beyene (PhD), Director of the Office of External Relations, Partnerships and Communications, warmly welcomed the delegates in his office and deliberated on strengthening the existing collaboration between the AAU and French universities as well as exploring new ones.

During the discussion, Dr. Jeilu pointed out engineering, natural sciences, health sciences and business administration as AAU’s top priorities that require current global partnerships. “As more than 90% of AAU’s graduate students are staff members of other regional universities, building the capacity of the AAU through such partnerships has a multiplier effect”, he added.

Specific areas of partnership such as Paleoanthropology and Paleoenvironment, plant medicine, biotechnology, and biodiversity were also raised and discussed.

On the same note, Dr. Zenebe indicated that as AAU strives to internationalize its academic programs, such partnerships have immense contribution towards comprehensive internationalization. He also accentuated the role commitment of the two institutions could play in making this partnership more fruitful and viable.

Moving forward, the two institutions have agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding that enables them undertake joint research projects, staff and student exchange and capacity building.

The Campus France Agency delegates, for their part, indicated that the top priority of their visit was to explore possible ways of attracting more Ethiopian students to study in France. “Out of over three hundred thousand international students across French Universities, Ethiopian students are very few. We have planned then to double the Ethiopian students’ number in the years to come”, one of the delegates explained.

The delegates also met a number of AAU students and discussed available scholarships France currently offers to international students. Their briefing was then followed by a Q&A session.

Campus France Agency is a public institution in charge of promoting higher education and managing the reception and international mobility of students, researchers, experts and guests. It is also in charge of managing scholarship programs from foreign governments and public and private institutions. Specifically, the institution informs international students about French higher education, guides them on their choice of training, helps them complete their application form and gain a visa.

Source: Addis Ababa University
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