Cooperation agreement between Daugavpils University and LESOTHO University

Aktualizēts 13.12.2017 09:26

Within the framework of Erasmus + program Daugavpils University has signed a cooperation agreement with Lesotho University (Africa). This agreement gives an opportunity for the staff and student exchange.

From November 28th until December 8th Prof. Dzintra Iliško from the Institute of Humanities and Societal Sciences, Center of Sustainable Education and the lecturer Elga Drelinga from the Faculty of Daugavpils University spent more than 16 teaching and 40 training hours at the National University of Lesotho (NUL) carrying out the following activities:

Participation in a ceremony that welcomed them to NUL attended by some Faculty of Education staff, all Deans of the University, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Nqosa Mahao, as well as the European Ambassador Dr. Christian Manahl;

At the seminar with NUL Faculty of Education academic staff we discussed on current reforms and trends in university teacher education programs.

At the seminars with post-graduate students on cultural issues and the education system in Latvia, and participation in post-graduate research proposal presentations. We shared issues on competency-based curricular transformations in Latvia as well as future cooperation perspectives;

The meeting with the ‘Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) Committee’ involved a reflection on effective strategies of promoting ESD at NUL through collaborative activities.

We participated at the fieldtrips to a ‘Community-based biodiversity conservation project’, ‘Lesotho Highlands Water Project’ and gained exciting experiences of the Basotho culture and lifestyles in order to appreciate the development and educational context in Lesotho. We discussed future collaborative projects between Daugavpils University and the National University of Lesotho.

We had an excellent experience of engagement with a deeper understanding of local culture and traditions as well as the challenges of the educational system of National University of Lesotho.

We discussed further development of projects within the BBCC consortium in Educational Research by including Lesotho University ESD group in the international Consortium. The Faculty of Education of Lesotho University has established a committee whose mandate is to lead and assist the Faculty to promote Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) activities. The following activities were proposed by this committee as a step towards realizing The Faculty’s initiative towards Education for Suitable Development: To develop and implement the Faculty’s ESD Change Project , to facilitate activities which focus on Faculty’s staff sensitization and capacity building in ESD. The activities include, workshops, seminars, short-term training, and conference attendance; in  promoting wastage and cost containment through good sustainability practices (and attitude) in the faculty and the university at large e.g. to eliminate energy and resources wastage; to identify, design, develop and implement FED change projects , to raise ESD awareness of the wider university community about sustainable practices and their significance; to galvanize ESD activities to a wider NUL community, Liaise with organizations and institution that promote ESD (e.g. ESENel, LCE, Department of Environment). The ESD committee members are the following: Mr. T. Ssendija (Proposed Coordinator), Dr. P. Mosetse, Dr. M. Raselimo, Mr. D. Makafane (ESNeL Youth Coordinator, to NUL), Dr. J. Chere-Masopha, Assoc. Prof. T. Mokuku. In future we hope to build joint projects and skype discussions on sustainability issues.

We have also visited educational Center in the village where we saw a big progress on developing eco-tourism and the local group of activists.

We have enjoyed immense hospitality of Lesotho people and University’s staff members who showed a warm welcome as well as shared their knowledge and expertise. We are very grateful for the provided opportunity to learn more about the local culture, traditions, and educational system.

This visit was a starting point for a further cooperation among both Universities. Two staff members from Lesotho University will visit Daugavpils University in January, 2018 where we will discuss in a more detailed way research projects among two institutions that will be followed by student exchange and joint research projects in education.

Lesotho will stay in our memories with its hospitality, wonderful landscape and a hospitality of Lesotho people.

Dzintra Iliško Daugavpils University, Latvia
For more information: dzintra.ilisko@du.lv
+371 29378690

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