I was invited to serve as a Regional Expert within the framework of the DAAD/DIES/University of Cologne ProGRANT Course in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The course, which is an initiative of the International Office of the University of Cologne, seeks to train and develop the Research and Grant Writing skills of scholars in the Global South.
Having been an alumnus of this course (Cameroon, 2015), I was selected to join the team of Regional Experts to assist in facilitating the course – a kind of teaching-learning experience!
The course ran from Monday 4th of February to Friday February 8th 2019 at the Ethiopian Institute of Architecture, Addis Ababa University. It was attended by scholars from East African universities, predominantly from Ethiopia and Eritrea. The following persons constituted the administrative and training team of the course:
- The Director of the DAAD Office in Ethiopia
- The Director of the International Office of the University of Cologne
- The Administrative Staff of the International Office of the University of Cologne
- Two Head trainers
- One Regional Expert
For five days, the team shared ideas and guided the participants on how to further develop and market their research ideas. As Regional Expert, my main task was to backstop the Head Trainers from the University of Cologne in the process, while also sharing my personal experiences. It rounded-off with a plan of action for further training through e-learning, and the Second Seminar which comes up in September.
The learning experience was important to further develop my pedagogical and course delivery skills which is much needed in my future career.
Apart from the teaching learning part, it was also an interesting opportunity to savor the warmth and hospitality of the land of Haile Selassie (Ethiopia). We therefore visited the following touristic attractions:
- The Holy Trinity Museum
- The Zoma Museuem
- The Addis Ababa University Museum and
- Entoto (A hilly spot where you can view the city of Addis Ababa)
- The Checheho Cultural Entertainment center.
All sites presented great and refreshing experiences. It was indeed a great Ethiopian experience!