The US Agency for International Development (USAID) and the American University in Cairo (AUC) celebrated the opening of a career development centre at Menoufiya University on 18 November.
The Menoufiya University Centre will provide opportunities for students to explore paths to successful careers in established industries, to improve their skills, and to network with Egypt’s leading companies.
The opening ceremony was attended by governor of Menoufiya Said Abbas, USAID/Egypt Director of the Office of Education and Health Wick Powers, Menoufiya University President Adel Mubarak, and AUC Provost Ehab Abdel-Rahman.
At the inauguration ceremony, Powers said, “At Menoufiya University, USAID is matching the power of Menoufiya’s high-calibre academics with the efficiency of professional skills training. The result is graduates who are qualified and competitive for jobs at companies in Menoufiya and throughout Egypt. The training also equips young people with the tools to connect with these companies and market themselves effectively, meaning they find jobs more quickly.”
The new centre for career development at Menoufiya University is the newest of 20 career centres being launched through the USAID-led $20.8 million partnership. What began as a pilot project in partnership with the Ministry of Higher Education and the American University in Cairo has now expanded to nine universities in Egypt. These career centres will eventually reach 70 percent of public university students, helping them pursue successful professional careers.
“The opening of UCCD in Menoufiya University is good news to students and graduates, as it will provide them with a wide range of outstanding international training programmes and career guidance to sharpen their skills and prepare them for the highly competitive labour market with the aim of reducing unemployment rates among graduates, especially that Menoufiya governorate has a large number of University graduates. The centre will thus create a strong link between employers looking for performance excellence, and students and graduates ready for the labour market,” pointed Menoufiya University president Mubarak.
AUC Provost Abdel-Rahman said, "We are pleased to partner with Menoufiya University in the establishment of their new career development centre. The centre will provide Menoufiya University students with access to career guidance services, and contribute to increasing their competitiveness and employability in the job market. We appreciate the support of the USAID in funding the University Centres for Career Development in Egypt.”
To ensure the sustainability of the career development centre and its career services, an AUC project team will train the UCCD staff of Menoufiya University to become career service providers who are capable of providing career guidance services to university students.
Menoufiya UCCD is the 13th centre to be inaugurated out of 21 centres in 14 universities across Egypt that aim to provide 1 million students with access to career education. The UCCD project works on bridging the gap between the academic education outcomes and labour market needs.
The centres for career development provide students with career mentoring and training in skills such as leadership, problem solving, critical thinking, and entrepreneurship. The centres also track evolving labour market needs to inform university curricula and establish key networks and linkages between universities and the private sector.