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  IPSS hosts the first African Diaspora Visiting Scholar

 IPSS hosts the first African Diaspora Visiting Scholar

In January 2016, the Institute for Post School Studies (IPSS) at UWC hosted the first of seven visiting scholars to the institute under the African Diaspora Support to African Universities program, coordinated by the Council for the Development of Social Science Research in Africa (CODESRIA) which was funded by the Carnegie Corporation. The initiative aims at strengthening relations between African academics in the diaspora and African universities. Sociologist and Associate Professor of Higher Education Studies in the IPSS, Patrício Langa, leading the initiative, successfully applied for a grant to host seven African based and African diaspora scholars with a project entitled `From brain drain to brain gain: working with African diaspora to strengthen the expertise in higher education, science and innovation in Africa´. 

The initiative seeks to mobilize both African based academics and those in the diaspora to contribute to the strengthening of African universities, the fostering of new generations of scholars in Africa in an ethos of excellence, and the revival of Higher Sducation studies, Social Sciences and the Humanities. The specific objectives of the IPSS with this project include the strengthening of its doctoral programs and curricula in Higher Education studies; mentoring of emerging scholars in Higher Education studies in Africa generally; as well as strengthening relations between African academics in the diaspora and those in the IPSS. Prof. Langa believes that the initiative will pave the way to positioning the IPSS as the new hub for Higher Education research in Africa, with the creation of new space that promotes and engages constructive debate on the multiple issues and challenges facing Higher Education studies on the continent. 

Professor Teboho Moja became the first diaspora scholar to be hosted by the IPSS under the diaspora initiative. She is a distinguished professor of Higher Education at New York University, and has been a policy analyst with a focus on the South African Higher Education systems. The late South African President Nelson Mandela appointed her Executive Director and Commissioner to the National Commission on Higher Education. In 2015, Prof. Moja was appointed an extraordinary professor of Higher Education in the IPSS which will boost the Institute’s capacity in Higher Education and position UWC to play an active role in research on Higher Education. Professors Langa and Moja spent 10 productive and pleasant days working on the development of a supervision model for doctoral education in Africa, curriculum design for a doctoral program in Higher Education studies, and exploring collaborative research initiatives to enhance the field of Higher Education research and training in Africa and globally.

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