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Status meeting for F.A.I.T.H pilot projects

Status meeting for F.A.I.T.H pilot projects was convened at Jigjiga University. Dr. Ephrem Tekle, the FAITH Project Manager, and Mr. Belayneh Bogale, the Project Assistant, along with Jigjiga University Core Team, held a meeting with TANDEM Experts of the project to review and assess the current status and progress of the pilot projects within the initiative.
 
The Pilot projects design by experts form Jigjiga university are related to Partner and Students Relationships, Industry partnership in Jigjiga University for Sustainable Educational Environment, Revising of Jigjiga University policy and Guidelines of Research and Technology Transfer and Integrating sustainability/SDGs in Jigjiga University’s research activity.
The meeting concluded with a renewed sense of direction and clarity on the team’s next steps.
 
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Eastern Ethiopian Industry Cluster Workshop

F.A.I.T.H Project, in collaboration with Jigjiga University STEP III, organized Eastern Ethiopian Industry Cluster Workshop on May 21, 2024. The workshop aimed to strengthen the linkage between Ethiopian Universities of Applied Sciences and industries.
 
His Excellency Bashir Abdullahi (PhD), President of Jigjiga University, emphasized in his speech the need for partnerships between universities and industries for sustainable development. Honorable Eba Mijena (PhD), CEO for Academic Affairs of Higher Education at the FDRE Ministry of Education, highlighted the importance of closer collaboration for activities such as curriculum development, co-financing, joint research, and internships.
Ephrem Tekle (PhD), coordinator of the F.A.I.T.H Project, presented a discussion titled “Realizing Universities of Applied Science in Ethiopia: the Contribution of Project F.A.I.T.H.” emphasizing the status of University-industry linkage in the Ethiopian context, Policy frameworks, Ethiopian higher education differentiation study and strategy, key features of Applied Science Universities, achievements so far, genesis and rationale of the project, its objectives, role, and responsibilities of Universities as well as industries on the realization of meeting the labor market demand. The presentation was followed by a panel discussion featuring Elias Abdullahi (PhD), Ephrem Tekle (PhD), Ahmed Mohamed (PhD), Mr. Ashenafi Daba, and moderated by Fekadu Yehuwalashet (PhD) which addressed questions, comments, and future plans from both industry and academia, including university leaders, teachers, and students. Finally, the establishment of an Advisory Board through the STEP III Project was introduced to the workshop participants to further strengthen the linkage and ensure its sustainability.
At the end, Bashir Abdullahi (PhD), President of Jigjiga University, expressed gratitude to all participants from various industries for their significant contributions, and organizers – Jigjiga University F.A.I.T.H Project: Work Package 8 (WP8) Core Team Zufan Gebrehiwot (Lear), Meka Kedir and Fekadu Yehuwalashet, PhD (Senior Experts) and STEP III project Team lead by Ahmed Mohamed (PhD).
 
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Year One Evaluative Meeting

On March 28th, 2024, we held Year One Evaluative Meeting of Project F.A.I.T.H. to assess the project’s progress and discuss the way forward. The meeting was held virtually and was opened by Honorable Dr. Birhanemeskel Tena, President of Kotebe University of Education. He stated that eight deliverables of the project have been submitted so far and the project had received great commitment from its partners. This commitment is essential in transforming Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS) in Ethiopia.
 
During the meeting, all partnering universities from Europe and Ethiopia as well as Ministry of Education presented first-year status and progress report of their work package – Work Package 2 (Development) presented by Natalya Sharovatova from Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences (OUAS), – Work Package 3 (Design and piloting) presented by Caroline Friedhoff from Centre for Higher Education (CHE), Work Package 4, 5 and 7 (Implementation, evaluation and community of learning) presented by Behailu Korma from Ministry of Education Ethiopia, Work Package 6 (Quality management) presented by Adanech Teshome from Wolita sodo university, Work Package 8 ((Dissemination) presented by Zufan Gebrehiwet from Jigjiga University, and Work Package 1(Coordination) presented by Dr. Almaz Wasse from Kotebe University of Education. In addition, External Evaluator Prof. Erwin Smet from University of Antwerp (UA) presented his reflection on the project quality.
 
In the end, Dr Ephrem Tekle, the Project Manager and the moderator of this meeting acknowledged the effort of all teams and mentioned that “Let’s keep the color of the project and move forward” because the project’s impact for Ethiopian Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS) is enormous. Finally, the meeting was closed by Honorable Dr Eba Mejana, CEO Ministry of Education Ethiopia, mentioned that the project have full support of the Ministry to accelerate its effective implementation.
 
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Celebrating One Year of Success in the EU Funded Project FAITH! 🎉

We are thrilled to share the incredible progress achieved in the EU funded FAITH Project over the past year! 🚀 In collaboration with our partners and beneficiaries from Ethiopia and Europe, we’ve embarked on an amazing journey to support the Ethiopian Ministry of Education in establishing a robust framework for the UAS sector and crafting a tailored Ethiopian UAS model. 🌍

Let’s take a look at some of our key milestones:

We diligently prepared the Project Handbook to guide our efforts.

  • With enthusiasm and determination, we officially launched the project through signing the grant agreement. 
  • ⁠We kicked off with a bang, signing the partnership agreement and hosting a successful kick-off meeting in March 8, 2023.
  • Our dedicated project management team has been tirelessly coordinating, monitoring progress, and troubleshooting any challenges along the way.
  • Successfully hosted Screening committee, general assembly
  • We have held informative workshops and reviewed best practices to share knowledge effectively.
  • ⁠Documented both the status quo of Ethiopian UASs and lesson learned from UAS in Europe 
  • Six toolboxes have been developed, covering crucial areas such as Internship, Partnership and Regional Development, Applied Research and Technology Transfer, Sustainable Development Goals, Career Pathways, and Part-time Lecturers and upskilling. Currently, the toolboxes are under pilot test and will be ready for use after August 2024. 
  • Quality control activities are in full swing with the development and utilization of quality strategies, time sheets, and regular reporting.
  • ⁠Our dissemination efforts are reaching new heights through strategic planning, social media platforms, website development, and engagement in various events.
 We are immensely proud of what we have accomplished together so far and look forward to even greater achievements in the future. Our aspiration is to see UASs in Ethiopia.
 
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F.A.I.T.H., virtual training on Project Management

As we are approaching the end of the first year of project F.A.I.T.H., virtual training on Project Management has been organized. The main objective of this training was to crystalize the next paths of the project effectively and to keep the project deliverables up to the standard and quality. During this stage, Implementation of pilot projects shall be effected with the purpose of testing and revising the toolbox. Based on the implementation experiences and lessons learnt will be documented.  Prof. Kai Handel from Hochschule Osnabrück and Dr. Ephrem Tekle from Kotebe University of Education lead the training session. For all participants from European and Ethiopian Universities, the session was insightful to take the project to the next highest level. In addition, each Tandem expert from Ministry of Education  Ethiopia, Kotebe University of Education, Wolita sodo university and Jigjiga University presented their pilot project to be implemented during the pilot period.  Various support documents and templates are shared to the experts as well. At the end, Dr Ephrem Tekle, the project coordinator stated that this is the very interesting step of the project as we will generate practical lesson which will enhance the toolboxes developed by the Tandem experts.
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Project General Assembly and Dissemination meeting

The European partnering universities of Applied Sciences of FAITH Project,  Hochschule Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences, Saxion University of Applied Sciences, CHE Centre for Higher Education contribution on Work Package 2: Development and Work Package 3: Design and Piloting is extraordinary. The experience shared and presentation given by Prof Frank Ziegele and Prof Kai Handel during the project General Assembly and Dissemination meeting added great value for Tandem experts to development the Toolbox which is reviewed on January 26, 2024 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
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JJU FAITH Project Team had a meeting with Jigjiga University President.

February 06/2024, JJU FAITH Project Team had a meeting with Beshir Abdullahi (Ph.D.), Jigjiga University President. During the meeting we discussed on the status of the work package 8 (WP8 – Dissemination) and “Next Steps” of the project.
At the end, The President of Jigjiga University, Beshir Abdullahi (Ph.D.), stated that more focus should be given to the next tasks of the project based on the action plan and he gave directions on the way forward.
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The F.A.I.T.H Project held a Toolbox Review Workshop,

The F.A.I.T.H Project held a Toolbox Review Workshop, aimed at improving the capabilities of Ethiopian Universities of Applied Science January 26, 2024, Addis Ababa – With representatives from partnering institutions and experts in attendance, the toolbox review workshop for Work Package 3 of the F.A.I.T.H project (Ethiopian Universities of Applied Sciences being F(it), A(djusted), I(nnovative), T(rendy), and H(olistic) to meet Industries and the Labor Market) kicked off on January 25, 2024 at Kotebe University of Education.

The event was inaugurated by the Honorable Dr. Birhane Meskel Tena, President of Kotebe University, who emphasized the necessity of partnership and cooperation in advancing higher education initiatives in his key note speech. In his opening remarks, Dr. Ephrem Teklle, coordinator of the F.A.I.T.H project, set the stage for the workshop highlighting the primary objective of the event.

The project coordinator claimed the objective of the workshop as to scrutinize the draft tandem toolboxes crafted by experts from Saxion University of Applied Science, Osnabruck University of Applied Science, Jigjiga University, Kotebe University of Education, and Wolaita Sodo University for Work Package 3.

Afterwards, Carolin Friedhoff introduced the all-encompassing concept of the toolboxes through a Zoom presentation. This was followed by Dr. ir Abje Y. from Saxion University of Applied Sciences, who shared insights on “Working in UAS in Europe” via Zoom. The session was followed with a lively discussion and exchange of ideas.

During the workshop, the Tandem experts, organized into teams, presented their collaborative efforts on six key tandem topics: Industry partnership + regional development, Internship, Sustainable Development, Career Path, Part-time, and Applied Research for Ethiopian UAS. The insightful discussions were backed by reviewers from Applied Science Universities and diverse professional backgrounds, including industries and professional fields. Their constructive feedback aimed to refine and contextualize the toolbox, ensuring its applicability and effectiveness within Ethiopian Universities of Applied Science (UASs).

On the second day of the event, January 26, 2024, under the moderation of Dr. Fekede Tuli, Accadamic Vice President of KUE and a project management team member, alongside Dr. Ephrem Tekle, the Coordinator of the F.A.I.T.H project, the review feedbacks were consolidated. The session delved into plotting the way forward for the project’s implementation.

Notably, Dr. Eba Mejena, the Executive Officer of Higher Education at the Ministry of Education, offered valuable insights and guidance, further emphasizing the collaborative trajectory of the F.A.I.T.H project in shaping the future of higher education in Ethiopia.

In his concluding remarks, Dr. Birhanemeskel Tena, President of KUE, expressed gratitude to all participants for their significant contributions, with a special acknowledgment to our partners from Germany for traveling thousands of miles to be part of this event in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

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FAITH Project General Assembly Meeting

Jigjiga university team, on FAITH Project General Assembly Meeting, presented the progress of Work Package Eight (WP8) – Dissemination and future plan. Mrs. Zufan Gebrehiwet (LEAR of the work package) stated, in her presentation, the main objective of the dissemination is to successfully transfer the result of the project to stakeholders, partners and decision makers. To do this the work Package focuses on Social media presence, website development and update, organize national and international conference to effectively disseminate the outputs of the project to the beneficiaries.