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Central Asian Faculty Development Programme

13 April 2022

There is a little doubt that faculty development constitutes a strategic necessity for institutional excellence, innovation, research, and quality of any university of repute. Irrespective of the institutional age, it remains essential for advancing institutional readiness to bring in the desired change in response to the ever-growing complex demands faced by universities and colleges globally.

Over a short span of time, UCA has managed to build solid relationships with some of the finest universities in the world including the universities of Cambridge, Oxford, Harvard, where UCA fellows and faculty have studied.

“This is a unique opportunity for scholars from Central Asia to receive full funding to pursue further studies. As the scholarship targets only Central Asian candidates, it allows us to compete within a relatively smaller pool. The most important advantage is job security upon our return after completing the studies,” said Salima Bekbolotova, recipient of the Central Asian Faculty Development Programme (CAFDP) scholarship in the academic year 2021-2022.

UCA has always been committed to providing world-class education in Central Asia. Faculty development is therefore an essential commitment for UCA, not only in terms of recruiting new and quality faculty and maintaining excellence, but also assisting existing faculty and staff to remain effective, relevant, and innovative.

CAFDP was set up as UCA’s flagship programme in 2008, and has been providing access and opportunities through scholarships for suitably qualified Central Asian candidates (including those from Afghanistan and Northern Pakistan), to study at UCA’s partner universities that are some of the best universities in the world. These scholarships, awarded to CAFDP Fellows, are co-funded by UCA and partner universities.

Upon completion of their studies, each Fellow serves as a faculty member or staff at UCA or the wider AKDN for 2-4 years, depending on the length of their graduate studies. As in previous years, UCA continues to receive a large response to their annual call for the Cambridge Trust and DAAD scholarships.

Under Phase I (2008 – 2018), some partner universities and institutions included the Asian Institute of Technology, Carleton University, German Academic Exchange Services (DAAD), Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, Michigan State University, University of Alberta, University of Bern, University of Cambridge and University of Exeter, among others.

Under Phase II (2018 - present), partners include the University of Cambridge, Simon Fraser University, Higher School of Economics, Harvard University, University of Alberta, and various German universities under the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD).

CAFDP: 64 Fellows in 30 Universities

So far, twenty-five CAFDP fellows have graduated and affiliated with UCA throughout the region in different capacities as faculty members, researchers and joint teaching and research appointments. In addition, 15 CAFDP fellows have begun their studies in the UK, Europe, and Canada.

At the Simon Fraser University, one of the significant partners of the CAFDP Programmes, three UCA faculty members and one alumna, are currently enrolled. With generous funding, the UCA-SFU Central Asian Faculty Development Programme was initiated providing access and help to further develop UCA’s faculty.