The University of Leuven in Belgium, a leading research institution in Europe and a key partner in the AMU-IUC program, has contributed high-end ICT equipment, including High-Performance Computing (HPC) nodes, servers, switches, and access points valued at €2,229,766.85 to Arba Minch University. Click here to see more photos.

During discussions with the IUC team, AMU President Dr. Damtew Darza, expressed that as one of the eight research universities in the country, the support received will greatly benefit the university, particularly in conducting large-scale and complex research projects. The president conveyed his sincere gratitude to the University of Leuven on behalf of AMU and its community for the significant support, affirming AMU's commitment to enhancing the collaborative efforts between the two institutions.

Vice President of Research and Community Engagement and AMU-IUC Project Coordinator Behailu Merdekios/Assoc. Prof/ remarked that AMU has never received such substantial and transformative donation over three decades. He highlighted the positive impact of the advanced materials received from KU Leuven on not only the university but also the colleges and secondary schools in the area providing them with resources for computer labs, blended learning, a digital library, and a reliable internet connection. Additionally, the donation strengthens AMU's reputation as Ethiopia's research university, attracting international partners, funding agencies, and organizations seeking specialized expertise and services in various fields.

The vice president also sent his heart-felt gratitude to project managers, coordinators, promoters, members of TISP1, and others on the North and South sides on behalf of AMU and his office for their tremendous commitment and role in making the support a reality.

AMU-IUC Project Manager, Dr. Fasil Eshetu, noted that during the program's first phase, we carried out several institutional capacity-building initiatives, including providing up-to-date laboratory and ICT supplies that meet European standards. According to Dr. Fasil, in the first phase of the program, a total of more than 31 million birr was spent to purchase the aforementioned resources for the university.

Dr. Fasil added that in addition to our collaboration at AMU-IUC, a memorandum of understanding was inked with KU Leuven in 2019 to work on research, teaching-learning, and capacity building. He explained that the donation of ICT equipment is a result of this agreement, achieved after three years of dedicated effort by North and South IUC teams. The support will significantly help to bridge the gap of ICT infrastructure. He further explained that the donation from KU Leuven will enable AMU to conduct cutting-edge and high-level research, technological integration in teaching methodologies, improve data management, and enhance community outreach through enhanced digital infrastructure.

Haileyesus Abera, Local Deputy Leader of the Transversal Institutional Strengthening Sub -Project 1 (TISP1), said, since the main focus of the Project Phase II has been further strengthening and making the infrastructure, services, and scientific knowledge and skills set built during the Project Phase I accessible to the local community, we have established and equipped an Education Innovation and Service Center and Research Support Center in AMU. Moreover, TISP1 donated 100 desktop computers in collaboration with AMU as part of its outreach activities to solve the acute shortage of computers in our partner high schools and public libraries located in Arba Minch Town and Arba Minch Zuria Woreda, he noted.

The Deputy Leader reports that more recently, KU Leuven generously donated a variety of high -end and significant ICT equipment to TISP1 to improve AMU's research and education practices as well as strengthen the community outreach activities of the AMU-IUC.   

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