Salone News

"I have joined the university"-Sengeh

4 February 2021 at 21:28 | 986 views

Public education on Public Education: Policy, Practice and Service- joining the University

By Dr. David Sengeh, Minister of Basic and Senior Secondary Education, Sierra Leone

Today was my first day as a proud faculty member of the Engineering Faculty of the University of Sierra Leone (Fourah Bay College). I met with the Dean and all Heads of Departments who warmly welcomed into their family. I am excited to announce that this week, I joined the Mechanical and Maintenance Engineering Department.

Firstly, this is an incredible honor. To serve one’s country as a Cabinet Minister is already a privilege of a lifetime. While academia was a possible pathway in my life, I never imagined I could do it at the same time as having a political life. This is only possible because I have a boss, the President of Sierra Leone, who at more occasions than one has urged his cabinet and other leaders to join the faculties of various institutions. This is why I can be publicly proud to share this added responsibility because it is in line with his mandate. I now have an opportunity to teach students who directly benefit from the policies I make as Minister for Basic and Senior Secondary Education. This level of feedback couldn’t be more exciting.

Secondly, as Chief Innovation Officer, I have an amazing privilege to now go beyond informing policy on Innovation and entrepreneurship. I will be teaching final year students modules in Engineering Management, Entrepreneurship and Innovation among others. Academic research is something The Directorate of Science, Technology and Innovation - DSTI has always supported and to have a direct vehicle at the University makes it 100X easier.

Finally, as an academic, entrepreneur and innovator myself, I am very intrigued about the possibilities of learning from, working with and teaching students at our university. I know my connections to institutions like Harvard and UPenn where I am a Fellow; Yale where we work closely with our Delivery Team led by Grace Kargobai; MIT where we have an existing MOU; and more, and private sector will be tapped to bring in deeper and global connections.

I will set up a research lab at FBC that will be doing interdisciplinary and cross cutting research that is targeted at solving societal problems. Do watch out for more ways of collaboration.