26 February 2024


ACCESS delegates, Industries, and Local HLIs celebrate 10 years partnership between INES Ruhengeri and the University of Leipzig.

From 04th -10th February 2024, the Institut d’Enseignement Supérieur (INES) de Ruhengeri hosted the ACCESS Summer School, Edition 2024. This event organized by the African Center for Career Enhancement and Skills Supports from 4th -10th February 2024 attracted international academic experts from universities in Germany, Nigeria, Ghana, Rwanda, Tunisia, Kenya, and Benin as well as local industries and stakeholders in skills development. It was also an occasion to celebrate 10 years of partnership between INES Ruhengeri, Rwanda, and the University of Leipzig, Germany, through the INES Innovation and Incubation Centre (INNOVIC) and SEPT Competence Centre. 


In his welcoming remarks, the Vice Chancellor of INES Ruhengeri, Fr Dr Baribeshya Jean Bosco, welcomed the local and international participants and expressed his joy for hosting such an event. He said that „the theme of this Summer School, "Universities and Businesses as Agents of Change: Embracing Transformational Learning," speaks a lot about the aspirations shared by universities and businesses. Living in a world struggling with complex challenges, from climate change to social inequality, where the solutions demand a fundamental and paradigmatic change, partners must move beyond traditional boundaries, forge new alliances, and embrace a learning paradigm that empowers both students and professionals to become architects of a brighter future“.


The Vice Chancellor of INES Ruhengeri, Fr Dr Baribeshya Jean Bosco delivers his welcoming remarks.

The guest of Honor, Director General of the Higher Education Council, Dr Rose Mukankomeje thanked the organization of such an event. She stressed the importance of a collaborative spirit in developing knowledge and skills, the pressing need to produce quality graduates who are ready for the market, compliance of universities with rules and regulations in the recruitment process of students and staff in HLIs. She reiterated the change in teaching approaches by emphasizing on practice driven-learning where students must have the opportunity to practice in the campus laboratories/workshops and, on the other side, must join industries and start familiarizing with industrial working approaches, market processes and behaviors. 


The guest of Honor, Director General of the Higher Education Council, Dr Rose Mukankomeje delivering her speech.

The Cultural attache at the German Embassy in Rwanda, Mr Marcel Consten commended the gathering of scientists from across Africa and Germany, and confirmed that „academic exchange is intrinsically a German thing“. Germans believe Knowledge should be free of charge and there must always be a link between knowledge and economy. How to link innovation, research and economic growth that benefit the whole. How do we get it from the societies and for the societies. How to partner with businesses, how do we choose what we research and how do we bring onboard the business community? He reiterated that topics to be discussed are a concern of every university around the globe especially when referring to how we get youth interested in the subject matter, how they get trained not only in science but also in other subjects and, how to prepare them to go out and be productive members of the society. 


The Cultural attache at the German Embassy in Rwanda, Mr Marcel Consten.

Professor Dr. Robert Kappel from the University of Leipzig, founding father of the Small Enterprises Promotion and Training Competence Centre emphasized the importance of innovation in the development of skills and SMEs in Africa. While relating the ongoing market changes and how far African countries lag behind in playing a pivotal role in the global business, he reiterated the importance of endogenous innovation and the use of local resources for creating more companies as well as jobs for a growing number of about 60% of world youth that Africa counts today and for tomorrow. Giving an example of the SEPT network around the world, Professor Kappel acknowledged that Africa is the market of tomorrow, that nurturing collaborations and partnerships in the global South-South or North-South is paramount, and that technology transfer in both directions is the driver of success for tomorrow businesses. As the founder of SEPT, he was happy that what started 30 years ago has become big and beneficial to many countries.


Professor Dr. Robert Kappel from the University of Leipzig, founding father of the Small Enterprises Promotion and Training Competence Centre delivering his speech.

Apart from international delegates, local HLIs (ICK, IPRC Ngoma, IPRC Musanze) are commended for their commitment and involvement in creating learning environments that facilitated their students to be integrated into the ACCESS network. This applies equally to partners of INES INNOVIC who participated in the Summer School, who expressed their joy to be part of the journey that INES has started, especially in supporting the institution to provide skills needed for the market. Such organizastions include SPARK from the Netherlands which sponsored the foundation of INNOVIC, STEM Power project funded by the Israeli Government which promotes STEM sciences at HLIs, RTI Hanga Akazi sponsored by USAID and intervenes in the development of Work Readiness Skills and Professional internships; AGEA sponsored by the German government through DAAD. 

The Summer school was another opportunity for the alumni of previous DAAD and other partners ‘funded projects. They exchanged with participants on their journey from studentship to becoming entrepreneurs, the impact that AGEA, ACCESS, or INNOVIC had in shaping who they are today, and how impactful they have become to the market or the local communities. 

While the Summer School is mainly about exchanges in terms of scientific and cultural experiences, it is at the same time an immense occasion for international delegates to visit and know more about the country. On this note, historical sites such as Gisozi Genocide Memorial, touristic venues in Kigali were visited during the Kigali City Tour, and various topographic views of Rwanda were experienced from Kigali, Musanze and Kivu Lake to mention a few. A combination of scientific, cultural and tourism activities in a relaxed atmosphere made the Summer school an enjoyable and memorable event. 

As we acknowledge the immense support from the event ‘s organizing team, thanks to ACCESS project, INES Ruhengeri and Leipzig University partnership. 

„Together we can achieve more “

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