On September 27, 2014, the Social Contract Center (SCC) organized a workshop Under the title of "Finalization of the First Phase of University Youth Training Program- Performance Evaluation and Lessons Learned", in collaboration with the Supreme Council of Universities.
The training workshop aimed to empower youth role in the community development process through equipping them with skills that enable them to effectively participate in this process, to introduce community initiatives and adopt development models that have positive impact on their communities.
Counselor Mahmoud El Khouly, SCC Director, indicated that the youth training program aimed to train and develop skills of 600 students (males and females) in 4 universities: Tanta, South Valley, Asyut, and Aswan. Females' participation reached 70% of total participation, which reflected their great interest in developing their communities and their willingness to adopt youth development initiatives.
Counselor El Khouly also referred to the training manual, developed by SCC, which seeks to build participants' capacities not only individually but also on the community level. He also emphasized that university education is not an end itself as it should be a means to qualify students for positive communication with their communities and to acquire the ability to overcome problems.
Dr. Mahmoud Dhaba'on, Vice President of Tanta University, mentioned that building citizen's personality is the gateway through which Egypt can be placed on the developed countries' map. Hence, poverty, which rate exceeds 50%, street children and illiteracy should be eradicated through innovative and creative measures. He also mentioned that Egyptian students should acquire creativity and originality in order to catch up with developed countries' students. He explained the lag of creativity and innovation due to the crowdedness of universities despite the low enrollment rate (17% against 60% in Japanese Universities). However, the state is aiming at raising this rate to 27% during the following five years.
Dr. Hefny Ismail, Vice President of South Valley University, said that the university encourages students' training programs especially those provided by SCC as they enhance and upgrade the students' way of thinking. The university is planning to organize training programs during the mid-year vacation, accompanied by a program for visiting some tourist sites in Luxor-Dandarra-Hurghada under the title of "Know You Country".
Dr. Abdel Kader Mohamed Abdel Kader, Vice President of Aswan University, emphasized the importance of participatory education rather than education through indoctrination. He also indicated that Aswan University is willing to organize a recreation program for participants in the training program.
Representatives of the participants evaluated the program and discussed ways of developing it. They called for the continuation of the program during the school year and the mid-year vacation and provision of necessary training facilities.
At the end of the workshop, counselor El Khouly presented trophies for the universities' vice presidents in addition to Dr. Gaber Ahmed Mogahed, Director of the Center of University Staff Capacity Development" and Dean of Faculty of veterinary Medicine, in appreciation of their efforts exerted in the organization of the program and their contribution to its success.