African Colleges Fail a Generation

Underfunded and overcrowded, promising universities begin to buckle
By Greg Atwan,  Newser Staff
Posted May 19, 2007 9:49 PM CDT
African Colleges Fail a Generation
'   (Ruth/Fremson New York Times)

(Newser) – Once a beacon of hope for the world's poorest continent, Africa's colleges are collapsing under the weight of too many students and too little cash, the Sunday Times reports. At Cheikh Anta Diop University in Dakar, students are packed into overcrowded dorms and classrooms, labs are dilapidated, and qualified teachers consider leaving for greener towers overseas.

Those same schools produced the first generation of post-colonial African leaders, but instructors are pessimistic about the next one. “Their education is worthless," says one Senegalese professor. "It doesn’t prepare them for anything.” Rather than providing the professionals developing countries need, many colleges are inducting kids  into violent gangs. (Read more Africa stories.)

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