WASHINGTON, June 23, 2011 - The World Bank’s Executive Board today approved a credit of US$10 million to finance the University of Guyana Science and Technology Support Project. An estimated 6,300 students and faculty will benefit from this project, which will strengthen science and technology tertiary education in order to advance Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS).
“By supporting the University’s faculty and students, this project will prepare today’s researchers and students to have the practical knowledge and skills to meet the needs of tomorrow’s low carbon economic and social development,” said Shaik Baksh, Guyana’s Minister of Education.
Specifically, the project will finance three components:
- The Education Quality Improvement Program will revitalize the University’s science curriculum and support more applied research towards meeting the critical needs for the LCDS.
- Infrastructure rehabilitation will include improving laboratory and building infrastructure at four faculties in a total of 14 buildings; providing these laboratories with scientific equipment to enable the delivery of practical science education and research; and establishing of a campus wide internet network.
- Institutional capacity building will support the University of Guyana in managing, monitoring and evaluating the project as well as planning for future phases of its strategic plan.
According to the University’s Vice-Chancellor, Lawrence Carrington, “The innovative research, contemporary facilities and institutional support provided by this project will equip the University of Guyana to respond to the needs of its society, find new ways to help local communities solve social and economic challenges and provide an important contribution to Guyana’s LCDS.”
The project directly supports University students and staff but the knowledge generated from enhanced research will also benefit the private sector, local communities, and international researchers engaged in rainforest conservation and biodiversity preservation.
“The World Bank is proud to support the University of Guyana and the LCDS through this project which is well-aligned with Guyana’s Country Assistance Strategy,” said World Bank Director for the Caribbean, Françoise Clottes, “Improving tertiary education will be critical to opening employment opportunities and meeting labor market demand as the country aims to develop its LCDS and the new skill set that this strategy will require.”
The US$10 million credit will be carried out over a period of five years and is provided by the World Bank’s fund for the poorest, the International Development Association (IDA). IDA has a 10-year grace period and a final maturity of 20 years.