UR launches Kent State University Centre, seeks to start aeronautics program

Following an agreement signed between Kent State University and the University of Rwanda (UR), the USA-based higher learning institution on Wednesday, January 25, officially inaugurated a center in Rwanda and seeks to partner with UR to start different programs, including aeronautical engineering.

The center which is located at UR’s College of Science and Technology (UR-CST) will serve as an operation site for Rwanda-based Kent State University staff who are set to make the partnership thrive and offer support in the preparation for different programs to be rolled out.

Aeronautical engineering covers the design and construction of aircraft, including how they are powered, how they are used, and how they are controlled for safe operation.

According to the Minister of Education, Valentine Uwamariya, the partnership between Kent State University and UR, particularly concerning rolling out the aeronautical engineering program, is beneficial given that Rwanda is building a new airport. Kent State University has a well-established aviation department and therefore can help UR-CST to prepare and teach the program.

She said there is already another partnership between the two universities since they all have centers for conflict management and are helping each other in terms of research and teaching.

Uwamariya noted that through the partnership, the universities seek to roll out a 2 2 program which will allow students from Africa to pursue their first two academic years at UR and two others at Kent State University and get a double-degree from both universities.

Apart from the partnership with UR, Kent State University also entered an agreement with Rwanda Defence Force (RDF) and is in the process of signing one with the Rwanda National Police (RNP).

Didas Kayihura Muganga, the acting Vice Chancellor of UR, said the inaugurated center resulted from a strong collaboration between the university and Kent State University. Their partnership has been running for over two years.

Talking about their choice to start an aeronautical engineering program, he said it is in line with the university’s objectives of linking what they teach with the vision of the country.

The program is expected to roll out in the academic year 2024-2025.

Marcello Fantoni, Vice President of Global Education at Kent State University, said the most important thing is how the higher learning institution matches their interest not only with UR but also with various government agencies.

Kent State University and UR are two large universities with over 30,000 students, each, with a lot in common as well as different areas, he said, which is important because they can help each other.

Fantoni also noted that before signing an agreement with UR, they had already identified around five joint projects.

The first step is to become strongly connected with the university by having people from Rwanda go to Kent State University, and vice versa, he said.

He called Rwanda a home for the university, explaining that they want to be part of the vision the country has clearly highlighted and explore more ways to collaborate on mutual benefits.

Source: The New Times

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