From Aggieland to Kenya: International Collaboration Promotes Education and CEHD’s Culture of Excellence
Two weeks, two countries, three cities and over 10,000 miles of travel – all in the name of education. A delegation from Kenya visited the Texas A&M University campus in College Station, Texas and later the Texas A&M Bush School of Government and Public Service, Washington, D.C. Teaching Site.
Texas A&M faculty members and administrators gave a series of lectures to participants from the Kenya National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) who were in College Station from March 28 to April 2.
The NCIC is a government-appointed body with the mission of promoting national unity, equity and the elimination of all forms of ethnic discrimination by facilitating equality of opportunities, peaceful resolution of conflicts and respect for diversity among Kenyan communities. At Texas A&M, they were trained on topics including leadership; emotional intelligence in the workplace; human resource management and development; organizational culture and ethics; and diversity, equity and inclusion.
The Educational Leadership Research Center (ELRC) hosted the learning and development and lectures as part of its mission to inform and enrich leadership practices at the local, state, national and international levels.
“It was such a great experience to engage, learn and interact with the leaders of NCIC. Knowing how critical appreciative leadership is in building thriving organizations and communities, I think it was a wise investment for NCIC leadership to come to Texas A&M to learn and share their experiences, perspectives, and worldviews with our faculty and leaders,” said Dr. Fred Nafukho, Co-Director of ELRC and Senior Associate Dean for Faculty Affairs in CEHD.
The following week, Dr. Matthew J. Etchells, Director of Education Outreach for ELRC and the Center for Research and Development in Dual Language and Literacy Acquisition (CRDLLA), met with Ambassador Lazarus O. Amayo of the Republic of Kenya and Mr. David Koech, Second Counsellor for Diaspora & Education to talk about education as part of a visit from the NCIC to the Texas A&M University Bush School of Government & Public Service in Washington, D.C.
“When D.C. sees that we are here in the nation’s capital, they not only see the Bush School, they see Texas A&M. We are right where any Aggie would expect us to be, right in the middle of it: in the middle of the city and in the middle of the policy discussions,” said Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Jay B. Silveria, Executive Director of the Bush School D.C.
Dr. Skitter W. Ocharo, Commission Secretary and CEO, also visited the Bush School D.C. with her team.
“This kind of partnership is important to support cultural awareness and grow international collaboration and our recent visit to work closely with the College of Education and Human Development was invaluable in strengthening our unified goals,” Dr. Ocharo said.
The MOU between the Kenyan Ministry of Education and CEHD aims for research collaborations and partnerships in the future.
“The Kenyan Ministry of Education collaboration with the Texas A&M College of Education and Human Development offers diverse, cross-country leadership understandings to improve education for all children and youth. Together, we can make a difference,” said Dr. Beverly Irby, Director of ELRC and Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs in CEHD.
“An international collaboration of this magnitude serves as an index of the College’s vision of transforming lives through leadership and innovation in education and human development. We look forward to solidifying this partnership involving the two greatest experiments this world has ever seen: a land-grant college and a republic founded on the principles that people could self-govern and determine their own destiny,” added Dr. Michael A. de Miranda, Interim Dean and Professor in the College of Education and Human Development at Texas A&M University.
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