Higher Education Partnership for Sub-Sahara Africa (HEPSSA) has launched a software training project at the University of Zambia (UNZA) themed Adaptive education for quality and employment engineering graduates.
In a speech delivered by Prof. Mundia Muya on behalf of the Vice Chancellor Prof. Luke Mumba, the project aims at bridging the existing gaps between the academia and industry.
He said this can be achieved by training students in using relevant industry based software and assessing ways of making education and training more adaptive to produce solution oriented and profitable students as well as graduates.
Prof. Mundia said the University has recognised that to accomplish its mission with extraordinary achievements, Quality in teaching and learning, research and dissemination and industry involvement are the essential tools to use.
He added that industrial practitioners should equally devote part of their time to offer specialised lectures to students when the University is in session because dual exchange program is best solution and opportunity to interact with engineering industry.
Meanwhile, the Director, Science and Technology, Ministry of Higher Education Ms Jane Chinkusu said by forming and straightening relationship between academic and industry, the program will ensure that the higher education system in sub-saharan Africa produces engineers with skills required to meet the needs of industry and to tackle local challenges.
She said this will happen through the increased number of students getting industrial placement, establishing dual exchange program, promoting knowledge sharing among universities and enhancing usage and application of industry based software package.
Ms Chinkusu said the ministry is pleased to see that the University through the school of engineering is working with the industry to implement software training to its final year students.
“I wish to urge the research team to ensure that the project’s objectives are achieved and look forward to receive the project report”, she said.
She then thanked the Royal Academy of Engineering UK for considering UNZA recipient of the grant and for the confidence that they have shown by entrusting the noble task of conducting the needed research.
HEPSSA is going to help address engineering skills shortage in sub-sahara Africa and showcase engineering role in driving economic development in region.
“We are aware that world engineering is the fast changing with the introduction and development of software”, she said.