Mastercard to pump USD500m into African education
DEVELOPMENT| Sept. 27, 2012, 10:46 a.m.
The MasterCard Foundation has announced the launch of The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program, a USD500 million education initiative that will provide talented yet economically disadvantaged students from developing countries – particularly from Africa – with comprehensive support for secondary and university education.
Over the past decade, Africa has been the second-fastest growing region in the world. Seventy percent of the continent's population is under the age of 30, and millions of them will need to enter the workforce. However, the region still lags the world in secondary and higher education completion rates. In order to sustain the continent's rapid growth, it will be essential that its young people have the skills needed to participate in a competitive global economy.
Reeta Roy, President and CEO of The MasterCard Foundation, announced the Scholars Program at a United Nations Special Session marking the launch of Education First. This initiative led by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Special Envoy for Education Gordon Brown seeks to ensure all children have access to quality, relevant, and inclusive education. The Scholars Program illustrates the values of the Education First initiative and was highlighted as an innovative model for educating young people and encouraging citizenship.
"An education does more than liberate people from poverty, it is the foundation of social and economic progress," said Reeta Roy. "The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program is a network of extraordinary educational institutions, non-governmental organizations, and young people. Together, they will contribute to the emergence of a more equitable, dynamic, and prosperous Africa."
Special Envoy Gordon Brown, the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, added, "The MasterCard Foundation's significant commitment to provide today's youth with the values, attitudes, and skills to give back and contribute to their societies through education demonstrates the values at the heart of Education First."
The Scholars Program is designed to enable successful entry into secondary school, as well as transitions from secondary school to university, and, ultimately, into the workforce. At all points, young people will have access to financial, academic, social, and skills-building supports. The Scholars Program will create a peer network of alumni who share a 'give-back' ethos.
"The MasterCard Foundation scholarship is more than just school fees to me; it's the fuel, it's inspiration, it's courage and confidence," said Joseph Munyambanza, a former refugee from the Democratic Republic of Congo who, at the age of 14, set up COBUR WAS, a non-profit organization that provides nursery and primary school for orphans. Munyambanza, a graduate of African Leadership Academy, added: "I feel that I am in the right hands because I get support and inspiration, and I have confidence that I will achieve my two big dreams for Africa; better health for my people and better education that changes lives."
The network includes: American University of Beirut – Faculty of Health Sciences, Arizona State University, Ashesi University, Duke University, EARTH University, Michigan State University, Stanford University, University of California – Berkeley, andWellesley College. The Program also includes a partnership with African Leadership Academy to develop an African-based careers network for the Scholars to access internships and jobs across the continent.
MORE DEVELOPMENT NEWS
Networks Unlimited continues to give backCommemorating Nelson Mandela Day, Networks Unlimited, a value-added distributor, donated blankets to the South African Family Relief Project (SAFRP). Read More
Bocodol Strategy 2020 to advance technology uptakeThe new 2016 to 2020 Botswana College of Distance and open Learning Strategic Plan is a testament of the institution’s move towards an embedded e-learning regime. Read More
Equity of trust essential for improving productivity – Tigo Barcamp 2016Ghana’s digital lifestyle brand, Tigo, has urged young entrepreneurs and graduates to establish trust in their profession in order to boost productivity. Read More
Entrepreneurship programme targets 5,000 studentsEnactus Kenya, an organization that promotes entrepreneurship among youth, aims to empower 5,000 students in Kenya with business leadership skills. Read More
Ericsson Networked Society City Index 2016 measures ICT maturity in Johannesburg and LagosAlthough starting at a low level, Johannesburg and Lagos are progressing in all ICT dimensions of the Ericsson Networked Society City Index. Read More
Etisalat: Manpower development vital to sustaining telecoms revolution gainsEtisalat says continuous development of indigenous skilled manpower is central to the sustainable growth of the telecoms industry. Read More
Networks Unlimited provides learnerships to 100 ICT studentsOne hundred technical students are set to graduate from an immersive, 12-month learnership programme within Networks Unlimited, with the skills, experience and certifications needed to kick-start their careers. Read More
MTN half-marathon raises funds for ICT in educationMTN’s third edition of the annual MTN 21km half-marathon has been growing steadily since inception and this year the race has boasted just over 6100 participants. Read More
IFC, CGAP, SECO to launch Ghana Digital Financial Services InitiativeThe International Financial Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, in partnership with the State Secretariat of Economic Affairs of Switzerland, SECO, and the Consultative Group to Assist the Poor, CGAP, will be launching a US$5.6 million Ghana Digital Financial Services Initiative in Accra. Read More
MTN employees mark 10 years of volunteerism in their communitiesMTN has kicked off the tenth edition of its flagship annual employee volunteerism programme, 21 Days of Y’ello Care. Read More
FEATURED STORYFirst-ever Africa Barclays Accelerator programme concludes
Ten fintech companies have concluded the first-ever Barclays Accelerator, powered by Techstars in Africa.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHEthical Hacking students can’t get a heck of a job
Botswana ethical hacking students report that they are failing to break into the local job market.