Continuing Education Unit inaugurated by Badakhshan University, University of Central Asia and Aga Khan Foundation, Afghanistan

Date: 09 August 2014
A new Continuing Education Unit at Badakhsan University (BU) was opened by the Afghan Minister of Higher Education, His Excellency Mr Obaidullah Obaid on 9 August 2014. Also in attendance was the Governor of Badakhshan, Mr Shah Waliullah Adeeb . 
The Continuing Education Unit was established through an agreement between BU and UCA and the Aga Khan Foundation, Afghanistan, which are both part of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN). Under the agreement, UCA’s School of Professional and Continuing Education developed the professional competencies of instructors who will teach at the Unit, leading to the international certification. 
UCA has also developed Dari language learning resources, and has established English and information technology international testing centres within the Unit and an Advisory Committee to review progress. In 2015, UCA will launch accounting courses at the CEU.
“The Ministry of Higher Education in Afghanistan is seeking to delegate more authority to its directorates and sub educational units to monitor activities,” said Minister Obaid, “This agreement is an important step in building the capacity of BU instructors and building capacity at the directorate level.”
The Unit will increase access to skills training in Badakhshan, where professional and vocational education opportunities are limited. Beginner and intermediate level courses in Applied English, Accounting and Information Technology are offered. By building competencies in these areas, the CEU is expected to strengthen the professional skills and marketability of Badakhshan learners and also enhance administrative functions at BU.
“Working with the Ministry of Higher Education and UCA, this agreement will help us strengthen the capacity of our instructors and students, and contribute to the future development of the university and the communities around it,” said Mr Khisraw Nazari, Director of BU.
The Unit is one of six satellite learning centres in Afghanistan established or being supported by UCA in partnership with Afghan institutions. The Centres, including the BU Continuing Education Unit, are part of the Multi Input Area Development Global Development Alliance (MIAD GDA) in Badakhshan Province of Afghanistan, an alliance between the Aga Khan Foundation and the United States Agency for International Development. 
"This agreement is our first with an Afghan institution of higher learning,” said Dr Bohdan Krawchenko, Director General of UCA, “And UCA is delighted to contribute its expertise in curriculum development, instructor training and course delivery and bring high quality, internationally recognised certificate programmes to learners at Badakhshan University." 
The programme makes investments across sectors over a sustained period to support long-term stability and growth in Afghan Badakhshan. In the next five years, the learning centres will train over 11,000 learners or 12 percent of the adult population in the target districts.
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