LUBBOCK, Texas (PRESS RELEASE) – The following is a press release from Texas Tech University:
the US Department of Stateof African Affairs Office named Texas Tech Universityof International Affairs Office (OIA) as the recipient of a grant of $ 502,957 under its University Partnership Initiative. The funding, which began on October 1 and will run until the end of April 2024, will allow the OIA to create the Summer Institute for Education Administration Leadership in collaboration with Oklahoma State University and the Global One Health Summer Institute (GOHi) at Ohio State University, during the summers of 2021, 2022 and 2023.
University partners worked with the U.S. Embassy in Ethiopia and the Ethiopian Ministry of Science and Higher Education (MoSHE) to design the summer institutes to prioritize and identify the needs of Ethiopian universities in according to their national priority areas. The U.S. Embassy and MoSHE will identify and select 50 higher education administrators from Ethiopia to train them on how to improve academic leadership and increase retention of administrators trained in leadership, management and governance.
The initiative will be led by Sukant Misra, principal researcher for the grant and Texas Tech’s vice-provost for international affairs. The training will be co-facilitated by experienced Ethiopian leaders who have demonstrated success in Ethiopian higher education. Professors, staff and visiting experts from the United States will lead interactive sessions.
“This project responds to a critical need in the Ethiopian education sector,” said Misra. “The number of universities in Ethiopia has grown dramatically over the past decade, but many higher education administrators lack the experience and professional development opportunities to effectively lead the country’s ambitious higher education agenda. . Our program will improve the management of the education system to increase school performance and student outcomes, one of the six priorities of Ethiopia’s education sector development program.
Texas Tech has worked with several Ethiopian institutions for several years, demonstrating its ability to develop and maintain long-term partnerships in the country while effectively administering leadership development programs. The OIA hosted two cohorts of Mandela Washington Fellowship Program for Young African Leaders, and the university has has developed master’s and doctoral engineering degrees with a group of Ethiopian universities, led by Jimma University.
Plans for the latter company began in October 2019. Representatives from Texas Tech, the State of Oklahoma, and the State of Ohio, as well as members of the Association of Public and Land delegation -Grant Universities (APLU) and Indiana University, met with leaders of the U.S. Embassy and MoSHE to develop a strategy on how U.S. universities could meet the specific needs of the Ethiopian higher education.
The institute will run for three summers under the leadership of Reagan Ribordy of OIA, Director of International Programs, and Nitasha Misra, High Level International Grants and Partnerships. Each summer will include three weeks of training in Ethiopia and the United States, with travel depending on the global health situation at that time. Training will include experiential life and learning opportunities, real world applications, team building, conflict resolution, and interactive, professional and personal development with designated mentors.
Participants will assess their abilities to apply essential management skills to identify, understand and overcome the challenges of organizational change. They will learn to identify development priorities and innovation opportunities on campus; how to support entrepreneurship and commercialization; and ways to improve government relations. They will also learn to assess the impact of new initiatives and alliances; how to create supportive environments for teachers and students; and understanding diversity and inclusion in higher education leadership.
The first cohort will attend the summer institute in 2021. The comprehensive and interactive training program will begin with 3 to 5 days of virtual training workshops in the country, followed by 7 days at Texas Tech.
While in Lubbock, participants will observe and analyze research management operations at Texas Tech, a Carnegie Tier One Research Institute, to learn the best practices that they can implement in their home institutions to improve research management capacity. They will also explore interdisciplinary health and agriculture issues, such as food security, and their impact on higher education.
After visiting Texas Tech, participants will spend four days in the state of Oklahoma and four days in the state of Ohio before returning to Ethiopia to work on projects related to the specific challenges they face at home.
In 2022, the second cohort will complete the institute, with the best participants of the first cohort participating in the formation of the second group. In addition, all participants from both cohorts will work with mentors assigned by US partner institutions, and all participants from the first cohort will report on the progress of their projects.
During the last summer of 2023, professors from each partner US university will offer training workshops at GOHi Addis Ababa for both cohorts and help university administrators set up a mentoring program within their respective institutions. The two cohorts will report on the progress of their projects and will receive a certificate from the American institutions, signed by the MoSHE.
Misra said he looks forward to working with the other collaborators on the project.
“We are proud of our partnership with the state of Oklahoma, the state of Ohio and the Ethiopian Ministry of Science and Higher Education,” he said. “We are confident that the Summer Institute for Leadership in Educational Administration will be a great success.”
(Texas Tech University press release)