Students who will enroll in the newly unveiled Carnegie Mellon University Rwanda (CMI-R) will benefit from its approach on finding solutions to ICT challenges, Michel Bezy, the Associate Director of CMI-R, has said.
Bezy was speaking at a public lecture in Kigali, this week, which attracted about 200 participants, mainly from government, education and ICT sectors.
CMI-R began recruiting students for a Master of Science in ICT, as well as for ICT professional courses within the East Africa context.
“Our objective is to collaborate with local universities to improve education quality. Rwandan universities will select some of their best students and help them to apply for our courses, and when they successfully enroll, we shall provide them with all the necessary assistance and mentorship to become valuable to the country in the ICT field,” Bezy said.
“When the students complete the courses, they will be prepared to examine trends in the dynamic technology industry within East Africa.”
However, participants cited the high costs at the university, stating that average Rwandan students might find it difficult to enroll despite their potential.
For each course it offers, CMI-R charges a tuition fee of US$1,575 (about Rwf938,700).
Bezy said scholarship funding was available through an understanding between CMI-R, government and other partners such as Rock Global Consulting.
Fred Mugisha, the Deputy Director General of Rwanda Education Board, advised students to exploit all the funding opportunities available in order to get a chance to study at the university.
“If you do not have enough money, you must try to find out how you can secure a scholarship because there are very many options. If need be, a student can also access a study loan because, in the future, the skills acquired will be worth it,” Mugisha said.
In July 2008, the government sponsored 11 students to undertake Masters degrees at CMU in the United States of America.
One of them, Allain Kajangwe, is now a senior software developer at Pivot Access.
“When I completed my course in May 2010, I interned at Erickson (multinational telecoms company) but, after a while, I decided to return home and use my skills to help develop my country,” Kajangwe said.
“When you have CMU on your CV, it is practically impossible for employers to ignore you; therefore, whoever has a chance should just take it with both hands.”
CMU-R intends to collaborate with the government to develop an innovation incubator, advance practical training programmes and a mobility research center.