The Vice President of Liberia, Her Excellency, Mrs. Jewel Howard-Taylor has applauded the Nekotech Center of Excellence for introducing the innovative SOS-NEKOTECH-USA-Canada master’s degree work-study program, which aims at providing $25 Million in partial prep scholarships and access to $1Billion STEM/AI educational loans for young Africans aspiring to pursue a master’s degree in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics/Artificial Intelligence) in the USA and Canada.
This is a proven five-year African STEM pilot program run by the SOS Global Investments and Nekotech Center of Excellence from 2018 to 2023, in Ghana, Sierra Leone, Malawi, Zambia and Cameroon. Through the pilot program, many students are now in the USA, undergoing their STEM master’s degrees, while some are working successfully in high paying jobs, having been fully funded through the no collateral loan program, for as much as $100,000 per candidate.
According to the Liberian Vice President, the opportunity to acquire skills and knowledge is what African youths need to enhance their capacity to fend for themselves and also contribute meaningfully to their countries. Vice President Jewel Howard-Taylor was speaking at the virtual launch of the project which had participants from over twelve African countries in attendance, including Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya and Tanzania, where the project is expanding to for 2024.
On her part, the Executive Chairperson of the Nekotech Center, Her Excellency, Rev. Dr. Princess Asie K. Ocansey, indicated that the fund is a no collateral loan which candidates will pay back while working in the USA/Canada for three years, after two years of their STEM and Artificial Intelligence master’s degree programs.
The USA allows for a three-year optional practical training (OPT) of full time work for STEM/AI candidates after graduation. During this time, the candidates earn $60,000 to $250,000 per year and are able to pay back their loans seamlessly.
She bemoaned the fact that of the 1.4 billion Africans, less than 39,000 students are studying in the United States, whereas South Korea with a population of 51 million, has over 40,000 students in the U.S. Out of the over 1.1 million foreign students in the U.S., Asia has 750,000 students who are mostly in the STEM field and this is impacting their lives, changing many narratives from poverty to prosperity.
“Africa has a huge potential to change its fortunes by taking advantage of this STEM/AI educational opportunity,” Dr. Princess Ocansey noted.
As a former US STEM student herself, a graduate of Rutgers University’s College of Engineering in New Jersey, USA, she added that India went on a similar route of educating their youth in STEM programs, and the result partly reflects in the over $85 billion in remittances India is enjoying annually, while Africa enjoys $46 billion.
Apart from that, Indian students have been able to attract top US Tech giants to India, where many worked during their OPT. She hopes that African leaders will take note and do the same to drive jobs home to end the chronic African youth unemployment. She applauded Liberia, Sierra Leone, Ghana, Malawi, Zambia and Cameroon for kicking off this program.
Mrs. Ida Abbeyquaye, Executive Director of Nekotech Center, indicated that the college is open to applicants aged 21 to 40 with a bachelor’s degree. All enrollments can be completed online at www.nekotechcenter.org at a low fee of $236, which can be paid online.
Certified candidates from the readiness college automatically qualify for 100% prep school scholarship valued at $2500. Candidates are assigned highly trained private counselors, who help them to secure school admissions and the loans that fully fund their USA tuition, books and housing. Candidates are supported with visa application, upon approval, they undergo settlement, integration, and re-integration training. This holistic five-year program is the first of its kind on the continent.
Other speakers at the event included H.E. Dr. Justina Mutale – Founder Justina Mutale Foundation in the UK, Nekotech’s Zambian partner; Bishop Dr. Evans Glover- President of Council of Ghanaians Pastors and Churches in the USA, Jose Meilo, Nekotech’s Cameroonian partner; Ms. Ida Abbeyquaye Nekotech Center’s Executive Director and Mr. Tyson Manering – Educo -USA, NekoTech’s educational partners for USA Universities and Mr. Gianluca Mauro, founder of the AI Academy and Harvard University Professor.
Joining the program from Hollywood, California was Lady Alicia Hamilton, co-founder of the new Universal Citizens Media Network and CEO of The Revelation Network as well as key media houses from several African countries.
As part of the events for the launch, the Nekotech Center of Excellence launched its exciting theme song entitled, ‘Level Don Change.’
To register, go to: www.nekotechcenter.org For more information, send an email to: E.Director@nekotechcenter.org
Ms. Ida Abbeyquaye, Executive Director Nekotech Center.
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