France-Ghana Higher Education Conference in France: 19-23 November 2018 [fr]
During the Higher Education and Research Conference of the Francophonie organised by Campus France and the Francophone University Association, a delegation comprising of 6 representatives from 4 public universities in Ghana travelled to France from 19th to 23rd November 2018 to meet schools, universities and institutions in their respective fields and discuss the possibility of embarking on common projects.
They were accompanied by Mr. Alexander Foulon, Head of Cooperation and Cultural Action at the Embassy of France in Ghana, Dr. Sonia Couprie, French Education expert to the Ghanaian universities for Academic Cooperation and Research and Mr. Daniel Doe, Coordinator of Campus France Ghana.
UMAT, University of Mines and Technology , was represented by Prof. Victor Temeng, the Pro-Vice Chancellor. This University, located in Tarkwa, specializes in the field of geological, mining and oil studies, as well as in mechanical, electrical and computer engineering.
Prof. Temeng met with several engineering schools such as: Mines ParisTech, ENSTA ParisTech, Chimie ParisTech, INSA Toulouse, Central Marseille, Polytech Marseille and CESI. Discussions focused on opportunities regarding student mobility (semester courses or internships), faculty mobility, capacity building, joint supervision of doctorate theses, as well as joint research projects.
UMAT has been mandated by the Ministry of Railway Development in Ghana to develop training programmes and in the near future a faculty in disciplines related to railroad activities. The meeting with the French Institute of Science and Technology for Transport, Development and Networks (IFSTTAR) enabled them to consider possible avenues for collaboration.
UMAT also met IFP School to consider avenues for training, capacity building or joint research in the field of mineral exploration and exploitation.
Finally, in the geological and mining area, UMAT’s visit to Orleans gave them the opportunity to discuss potential collaborative projects with BRGM Campus, a French Institute responsible for activities related to education and mining.
Prof. Gabriel Ayum Teye, Vice Chancellor and Dr. Salifu Mahama, Director of Multidisciplinary Research of UDS represented University of Development Studies, UDS .
Prof. Teye and Dr. Mahama met with representatives of the University of Bordeaux Montaigne, University of Nanterre, as well as those of the Institute for the Study of Economic and Social Development of the Paris1-Sorbonne University as well as their Research Development Unit and the IRD units.
One of the characteristics of UDS is to link theoretical teaching to academic research and practical fieldwork in order to bring real solutions designed to solve development problems.
In view of this, all the students are put in multidisciplinary groups and tasked to perform field work with villages or communities every third trimester per year for 3 years of their bachelor’s degree.
This feature greatly appealed to the French Institutions during the Higher Education Conference and it facilitated several academic exchanges on the student and faculty level and raised ideas for common research projects during the meetings.
University of Health and Allied Sciences was also represented by the Vice-Chancellor Prof. John Gyapong and Prof. Eric Ofori, Dean of the Faculty of Paramedical Sciences.
UHAS is a young University (established in 2011) which specialises in medical and paramedical science and seeks to establish institutional partnerships with the France in the field of health and sport studies and medical imagery.
Prof. Gyapong and Prof. Ofori visited the medical centre of the National Institute of Sport, Expertise and Performance, INSEP, as well as the Sports Medical Clinic of Bordeaux Mérignac. These visits served as a wake-up call to UHAS on the need to integrate non-state actors in the process of establishing partnerships, as well as consider collaborations with experts of the sports clinic to offer technical support to the Department of Sports Medicine that UHAS is currently building.
They were also able to meet with representatives of theUniversity of Reims Champagne-Ardenne and the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Bordeaux. Discussions also centred on academic mobility, capacity-building as well as joint research and publication projects.
Dr. Dadzie met representatives of the Pasteur Institute to study the avenues of collaboration between the two institutions. Since the two institutions share a range of interests and objectives, the Pasteur Institute has expressed its desire to conduct a reciprocal visit to the Noguchi Institute in 2019.
Dr. Dadzie also went to Montpellier to meet the research teams of the Department of Health and operational units of the Institute of Research for Development, IRD as well as visit the ’Vectopole’ of the IRD. This visit enabled both parties to consider joint research projects in the domain of activities of the two institutions beyond the ongoing collaboration with the MERIT research unit.
In conclusion, these different visits were marked with rich deliberations and enabled Ghanaian universities to not only meet universities and high ranking French schools for classical academic partnerships (mobility, joint research programs, and applications for Common Erasmus+ projects) but also network with French training centres and research experts in their respective fields.
All of the actors were invited to visit Ghana for the 5th France-Ghana Higher Education and Research Conference as well as the 2nd edition of the #ChooseFrance Education Fair, scheduled for the week of October 14, 2019 in Accra.