The University of Manchester and The University of Zambia (‘UNZA’) – together with Copperbelt University (‘CBU’) initiated a “Partnerships in Africa” (EPA) project which commenced in 2009. EPA is a project, which aims to support English Higher Education institutions to engage in partnership with Sub Saharan African universities as well as education and training institutions to build institutional capacity and quality to deliver employability skills in collaboration with local employers and social enterprises. The EPA project was officially launched by the Minister of Education on March 15, 2011. EPA grants were funded by the UK Government’s Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS). The British Council managed EPA and is working with BIS to deliver EPA outcomes in the UK and Africa.The initial EPA has been established between the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Manchester, and the respective departments at UNZA and CBU. However, for other departments within UNZA and CBU the established platform will move to develop partnerships on a similar basis.
The main objectives of the EPA are:
- To forge a sustainable link between industry and the Universities so that industry becomes a source of real life problems for engineering projects and others. Industry provides feedback to the Universities on education requirements to suit industry.
- To redevelop the final year projects module as part of curriculum development so as to bring it up to international standards using University of Manchester as a benchmark. This will provide a template for all other modules
- To obtain international accreditation of programmes in the medium to long term and invite industry to form part of the quality assurance committee.
- To obtain industrial sponsorship to improve the quality of teaching and teaching facilities at UNZA and CBU.
- To promote and enhance the Industrial attachments of students.
2.0 Industrial Partnership
A committee comprising Industry, University of Manchester, UNZA and CBU has been constituted to drive the objectives of the EPA. So far the EPA has attracted industry support. Some of Zambia’s largest and most important companies signed a Declaration of Intent to sign a Memorandum of Understanding with UNZA which will contain the detailed elements of support that these companies intend to provide over coming years. These Companies are, in alphabetical order:
- Copperbelt Energy Corporation PLC
- Huawei Technologies Zambia Co. Limited
- MTN (Zambia) Limited
- Lunsemfwa Hydro Power Company Limited
- Zambia Electricity Supply Corporation Limited (Zesco)
A number of other companies have indicated their intention to pledge support to the EPA project, or have undertaken activities in the past consistent with the objectives of the programme. Of particular mention are the following:
- Lafarge Cement Zambia PLC has paid for computers to be transported from the University of Manchester to University of Zambia (UNZA).
- LinkNet Resource has installed a container with internet connections next to the School of Engineering;
- Copperbelt Energy Corporation (CEC) has refurbished the lecture theatres in the School of Engineering at the University of Zambia(UNZA), providing improved furniture, screens and laptops to teaching staff.
- Telenet donated twenty desktop computers to University of Zambia (UNZA)
- Toyota Zambia donated learning engine and will be reequipping the automobile laboratory
2.1 The EPA achieved progress
There are many other companies who currently support, or who have supported in the past industrial placements by student from UNZA and CBU. Those companies are thanked for the support, and it is hoped that these companies will respond positively to the challenge to further deepen their involvement with these institutions by signing a long term Memorandum of Understanding.
- Lunsemfwa Hydro Power Company has donated to school of Engineering laboratory equipment bought from PYHWE company Copperbelt energy corperation (CEC) is on course with the construction of the High Voltage substation at the School of Engineering.
- Developed landscape before HV substation equipment delivery behind School of Engineering
- Heavy duty truck delivering HV Substation equipment at the UNZA School of Engineering
2.2 Goals and vision of EPA project
- To have the old laboratory equipment replaced, and laboratories re-equipped and re-designed to modern standards.
- To transform the laboratories to the standard of the laboratories at the University of Manchester, shown below.
It is evident that to achieve the above vision our business world has to play a key role as the government alone cannot manage.
3.0 How much funding is required?
The estimated level of funding required to refurbish the standards of the laboratories at UNZA varies depending as indicated in the list of required items. Additional funding will be required to maintain the standards of the laboratories, and attract sufficient well qualified staff to consistently deliver a high educational standard.
3.1 What sort of assistance is required?
There is a definite need for capacity building in UNZA in the following areas:
- Industrial training for final year projects;
- Funding of equipment at laboratories;
- Funding of research programmes;
- Funding for scholarships / additional lecturers.
Other areas of assistance can also be offered – the above list is not exhaustive.
3.2 Who can help?
The EPA programme is particularly interested to hear from:
- Companies, agencies and organisations in Zambia who are interested to provide industrial placements, finance for capital
- Projects or financial support for the Universities generally;
- Funding agencies who may have access to additional sources of educational funding;
- Individuals, possibly alumni of the Universities, who may wish to contribute to the objectives of the programme.
3.3 What are the next steps?
Please contact the Dean School of Engineering, identifying the nature of your interest or possible support for the project. This brochure provides contact and guidelines to interested people and organisations.
4.0 Will my assistance go to intended purpose?
The University of Zambia School of Engineering has opened a separate account UNZA-EPA project account which is ring fenced and guaranteed transparency through regular auditing by our internal and external auditors from our business world partners. The Account signatories are from two panels UNZA and a business world representative. Willing Companies/Individuals may purchase equipment direct from suppliers, however, its encouraged to use the project account as UNZA have tax waiver on all imports. The donors are welcome to inspect their pledged equipment once purchased.
5.0 What are the benefits and incentives from government?
The Minister of Education launched EPA and attaches the great importance as the government alone cannot manage.Therefore, business partner being direct beneficiaries of the highly skilled labour should come on board to help the government in capacity building.
The competitiveness of products on global market depends on innovations and highly labour, skill backed by intensive research in the interest areas. The vision is to see all leading Zambian companies have an innovative research laboratory housed in the School.
6.0 How to deposit the funds
The funds can be donated by bank Telegraphic Transfer (TT) in the account, by Cheque or Cash to the School.All transactions should be notified to the Dean School of Engineering. Bank details as well as the contact details are shown on the next page via the link below;