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Graduation at Amoud
ISSUE 79
Front Page
Index

Headlines

- Amoud University Holds First Graduation Ceremony

- Internationally Acclaimed Kenyan Scholar Supports Somaliland’s Independence

- The Fall of Abdillahi Yare

- "Success is not something you should merely want, it is something you should work for." 

Health

- Drug: The Double Edged Knife (Part 16)

International News

- Foreign Powers Stalk Somali Peace Talks

- Education by Radio in Somalia

- Somali Poet Marches For Peace

- Facing Up to the Asylum Issue

- Aid Shipments Causing Congestion in Djibouti Port

- Rights Group Reports Increase in Abuses

- UNHCR Resumes Repatriation to Puntland

- Somali Regional State President Removed

- For Somali Refugees, Dazzling Start to a Safer Life

Peace Talks

- Peace Talks to Move to Third And Final Stage

Editorial & Opinions

- Graduation at Amoud

- The Ugly End of the Arta Faction

- The Birth of Rayyaleism

- Hadraawi’s Peace March is a Good Start For a Viable Peace Movement

- The Role of Somaliland Diaspora

- The White Man Unburdened


It was like a dream that has finally come true for the hundreds of guests of honor, students and other invitees who sat cramped in the conference hall of the Amoud University, to attend the graduation ceremony held last Wednesday, for the first group of Somaliland students to graduate from a Somaliland university.

Surely the establishment of Amoud University hasn’t come easily considering the enormous challenges that the pioneers of this project had to overcome. One of the tangible outcomes of these efforts to bring higher education to Somaliland, has been the graduation of 30 young men and 2 young women who received Bachelor degrees Wednesday either in Business/Public Administration or Education. Hardly a result worth bragging about in a country of roughly 3 million people, the majority of whom are under 25. To Somalilanders however, last Wednesday’s graduation from Amoud University was seen as a new development of both historical and symbolic significance. Somalilanders viewed the event as their triumph over a policy followed by all the successive Southern-dominated governments of Somalia that in effect barred the establishment of institutions of higher learning in Northern territories. Now thanks to their own efforts, Somalilanders have access to university education on their own soil in Amoud University which was founded in 1998 and Hargeisa University which came into being in 2001.

A closer look at Somaliland’s current education system reveals that a great deal of improvements are still needed in the quality of education and the quantity of educational facilities available to deliver the service. The present situation in public schools where over 100 pupils crowd one classroom is not acceptable. Since good educational standards cannot be achieved by poorly trained teachers, it will be necessary not only to address the insufficiency in classroom space available, but also to ensure that the teaching staff for all grades in high schools possess the necessary qualifications and skills.

The responsibility for building more classrooms, especially in densely populated areas in metropolitan Hargeisa lies primarily with Somaliland's government. Institutions like Amoud, Hargeisa University and the Teachers Training College in Hargeisa can be tapped for the needed human resources with skills in the field of education. Toward this end, both Amoud and Hargeisa will need an enhanced regular government support to enable them to respond adequately to the needs of public schools on the one hand, and to consolidate and expand their programs.

The President and Vice-president who made a point, during the presidential campaign, of the fact that unlike other contenders they had kept their children inside Somaliland, have now a chance to pick up somebody who is capable and dedicated to head the Ministry of Education. To secure optimum motivation and dedication, the candidate must be a parent whose kids are enrolled in Somaliland's schools. Amoud has shown us how a few individuals, with little resources, but with a lot of dedication, could make a difference. We should all follow their example.

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