AUN has enrolled pioneer students of a Gender-Based Violence in Emergencies (GBViE) course.
The program is run in collaboration with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).
At the November 18 kick-off ceremony, President Dekle said the collaboration is very special for the AUN learning community.
"We got 20 new friends. They will be part of the AUN family. I'm excited about the United Nations Development Goals. You may not realize this but the program you are about to do satisfies three of the goals. Goal number 3 is health, no. 4 education, and no. 5 gender equality."
Vice President for Academic Affairs & Provost, Professor Muhammadou Kah, said this is just the beginning of partnerships with international NGOs.
"AUN is ready to collaborate with the UNFPA and the entire UN system. One of the things that we hope this training will do is to sow the seed where it will go beyond just the participants here… because gender violence is a reality and much more around emergencies."
Program Consultant, Agnes Enid Koome, said she was amazed by the interest the program generated. She praised the exceptional leadership of the School of Law (SoL) Dean Lawal Ahmadu for putting together a great team that recruited the applicants from more than 400 applications.
"We have a very strong blend. We are saying for this first cohort we have been able to get the best of the best. For the very first time, we find that we have been able to have practitioners in the class. We have been able to have an academic, Prof. Hannah Mugambi."
She added that the course is unique because it links theory to practice. Besides the classroom experience, she said the participants will also have the opportunity to learn in the field by being placed on a three-month internship where they will get mentored in the host institution.
"This course is applying a blended learning approach. Blended learning means it is not just about the classroom, it is about experiential learning. It is about us visiting the service providers on what is working and what is not."
Yusuf Amos Sunday, Executive Director of Clear View Integrity Foundation, an implementation partner of the UNFPA project, spoke on the course content of the course.
"The curriculum has been well thought out and well designed so that the participants go back with a lot of knowledge, skills and a lot of experience."
A participant and Country Director, Child Voice Nigeria, Nari Welye, spoke on the course becoming an important empowerment of the 'voice of the voiceless'.
Gender/GBV Specialist working for the UNFPA, Dr. Zubaida Abubakar, said the course is one of the strategies to intervene in gender-based violence.
"It is an important strategy because it enables us to build local capacity to address the challenges that are going on, not just in the northeast but in the rest of Nigeria."
"Let me thank AUN for having the foresight to collaborate with us to establish a pilot course in Nigeria. We are very happy to collaborate with you. I think the knowledge that your students will gain from your university can be used in all parts of Nigeria."
The two-week course on Gender-Based Violence was domiciled at AUN’s School of Law. Professors from SOL and other departments led key sessions.
Reported by Omorogbe Omorogiuwa