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2017 World Friends ICT KAIST Sets Off to Ethiopia, Tanzania
KAIST launched the ‘2017 World Friends ICT KAIST’ on 21 June at a ceremony held at the Faculty Club. The event was attended by 40 student volunteers and faculty members including President Sung-Chul Shin and student volunteers. The ‘2017 World Friends ICT KAIST’ is an oversees volunteer program aimed at providing ICT education for students from developing countries and for cultural exchange. The program was organized by the KAIST Leadership Center and sponsored by the National Information Agency (NIA) since 2015. President Sung-Chul Shin delivered words of encouragement to start the opening ceremony, followed by an oath-taking by the volunteer group, safety training, and a commemorative photoshoot. This year’s World Friends ICT volunteer group consisted of 32 students and 2 staff members to lead and to support the team. The group was divided into eight teams including APP-frica, KAI-Tigers, and WITH (4 members per team) to volunteer in Addis Ababa Institute of Technology (AAIT) and Adama Science and Technology University in Ethiopia (ASTU), as well as Nelson Mandela African Institute of Science and Technology (NM-AIST) in Tanzania. The teams will educate local students on ICT and promote cultural exchanges. The volunteer period is from July 7 to August 5, lasting about a month. KAIST conducted primary document examinations and interviews from April 27 to May 18 on volunteer candidates who registered to take part, and selected 32 student volunteers. A total of 68 students registered to volunteer, resulting in a 1:2.1 competition rate. The volunteering program was customized to the local needs of Ethiopia and Tanzania and thus consisted of ICT education, cultural exchanges, volunteering at farms on the weekends, and science experiments. The area with the most focus by the volunteer team is ICT education, which accounts for 70% of the total volunteer activities. The aim is to educate Ethiopian students at AAIT and ASTU on Windows, MS Office, Adobe Photoshop, and using smartphones. In Tanzania, the team is to volunteer with students of NM-AIST to provide ICT application education such as water tank control using appropriate technology and Arduino to local high school students. The team is also planning to promote cultural exchanges by preparing K-Pop dancing, traditional Korean games such as Korean shuttlecock game (jegichagi) and Korean wrestling (ssireum), traditional cooking such as bibimbab and half-moon-shaped rice cake (songpyeon), and teaching the Korean language, as well as preparing cultural performances with local university students. On the weekends, the team will visit local farms to volunteer, and local elementary schools and orphanages to conduct science experiments for children, as well as physical education and art activities. (Photo caption: Volunteers poses with faculty and staff members including President Sung-Chul Shin at a ceremony on June 21.)
Professor Lee to Head the Addis Ababa Institute of Technology
Emeritus Professor In Lee of the Department of Aerospace Engineering at KAIST was appointed to the post of President of the Addis Ababa Institute of Technology (AAiT) in Ethiopia. His term will begin on August 1, 2016 and end on July 31, 2018, which can be extended up to five years. AAiT is an affiliated institute of Addis Ababa University, a distinguished national university in Ethiopia, and specializes in education and research in engineering and technology. There are currently 5,500 undergraduate and 4,500 graduate students enrolled at the institute. The Ethiopian government has recognized the importance of science and technology for the future of the country. The government intends to develop AAiT into a distinguished research university similar to KAIST, and thus sought advice from KAIST to recommend an administrator who will head AAiT. Upon recommendation by KAIST President Steve Kang, Professor Lee was appointed. Professor Lee graduated from Seoul National University with bachelor's and master’s degrees in aeronautical engineering and earned his Ph.D. in aeronautics from Stanford University. He has served as the President of The Korean Society for Aeronautics and Space Sciences, the Director of the KAIST Satellite Technology Research Center, and a Research Associate at NASA Ames Research Center.
KAIST Undergraduate Students Volunteer in Ethiopia
World Friends (WF), one of the undergraduate student clubs at KAIST, offer students opportunities to volunteer in underdeveloped regions and countries. This year the World Friends team travels to Ethiopia from July 9 to August 17, 2015. The aim of this trip is to help Ethiopian students fill gaps in their knowledge of information technology and encourage KAIST students build leadership skills through volunteer activities. Twenty-eight students will make the trip. KAIST students will visit the Addis Ababa Institute of Technology and the Adama Science and Technology University, as well as some local high and elementary schools in Addis Ababa, where they will run computer classes related to the basics of information technology such as C Language, Java Programming, Photoshop, MS Office, and Windows. The volunteers will offer Adama Science and Technology University students an advanced computer course to prepare them to participate in the ACM-ICPC, an international computer programming competition for university students. KAIST students will also introduce Korean culture to Ethiopian students including K-pop, Korean cuisine and fashion, Korean language lessons, and traditional Korean art. The Dean of Student Affairs and Policy at KAIST, Professor Young-Hee Kim said, “I hope the students from two very different cultures will cherish this opportunity to interact with each other and contribute to narrowing down the regional disparities in the IT field.”
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