CAIRO: The American University in Cairo and Exxon Mobil Egypt joined forces and launched an initiative to educate and train 20 teachers and administrators from Hadayek El Maadi Experimental School and Kind Fahd Modern Language School.
The signing ceremony honoring the cooperation between both parties was held Monday at the Four Seasons Nile Plaza.
Samiha Peterson, distinguished professor and interim dean of AUC’s Graduate School of Education explained, “School based participation serves to ensure that the graduates of our program do not face resistance and jealousy from their colleagues, which may end up forcing them to put their experiences aside.”
“The program builds a community of professional friends that help each other bring about change,” she added.
Abdelrady Mohamed, participating from Hadayek, agreed. “It’s easier to work together and think critically about making changes if you are from the same school,” he said.
According to AUC President David Arnold, “This Professional Educator Diploma Program increases the knowledge and sharpens the skills of educators. This is an opportunity for AUC and for the future of Egypt.”
The 20 teachers were selected based on several criteria, including teaching and language skills. “We had to pass a challenging round of examinations at AUC before being accepted into the program,” said Amal Essam, also participating from Hadayek.
Essam recounted that she has so far attended two courses at AUC, which focused on integrating technology in the classroom and handling students with learning difficulties. “I can now teach my students how to use the computer for research purposes, instead of just Facebook and emailing,” she said.
Thomas Walter, chairman and lead country manager of ExxonMobil in Egypt, elaborated on the company’s financial support to the program in AUC. “The cost of this program adds up to around $3,000 per student over two years,” he revealed.
“Education and opportunity go hand in hand,” asserted Walter. “Nothing is nearly as important as the opportunity that a quality education provides.”