Carnegie Mellon University-Rwanda (CMU-R) yesterday formally launched graduate degree programmes almost a year since its inception in the country.
The event was held at the campus’ temporary premises located at Telecom House in Kacyiru.
The initial class of 2012 had 26 students but the institution is targeting to enrol about 40 students.
The graduate programmes launched include Master of Science in Information Technology and Master of (MSIT) and the Master of Science in Electrical and Computer Engineering (MSECE) but the latter programme will begin two years after MSIT’s commencement.
All enrolled students are taking MSIT course and will graduate in 2014.
Speaking at the event, Dr Vincent Biruta, the Minister Education, said the opening of CMU-R is a major achievement for the government.
“We expect Carnegie Mellon University to boost ICT innovations and attract major global IT companies to our country, which will create jobs for Rwandans,” he noted.
Biruta stated that with CMU-R entry into Rwanda, the country aspires to be a leader in technology innovations in the region.
In addition to the academic programme, CMU-R will collaborate with the government to develop an innovation incubator, advanced practical training programmes, executive education programmes and a mobility research centre.
The university plans to open permanent premises in Rwanda in 2015 according to officials.
The $13 million campus to be funded by the African Development Bank (AfDB) is set to be constructed at the Kigali Special Economic Zone in Nyandungu Sector, Kicukiro District.
Jean Pierre Niyodusenga, one of the students, said he was excited to join one of the most prestigious universities in the world.
“I hope to earn the best Information Technology (IT) knowledge and skills and be able to become a recognized ICT innovator in the region,” he noted.
Niyodusenga holds a Bachelors degree in IT from Adventist University of Central Africa, Mudende and he is going to pursue a master’s degree in MSIT.
Rwanda will award 50 percent scholarships as tuition fees for citizens of the East African Community (EAC) member states. The annual tuition fee is US$ 38,900 and scholarships are available for both the Master’s programme and professional development courses.
Bruce H. Krogh, Director of CMU-R, said the campus targets all IT graduates and professionals who want to enhance their technological skills.
By Frank Kanyesigye, The New Times