Harbel, Margibi County – Gaelle Mediem, the Chief of Office Staff of the First lady of Liberia Clar Weah has admonished 19 young Liberian students who were awarded a four-year scholarship at the Institut National Polytechnic Houphoet Boigny in Yamoussoukro, La Côte d’Ivoire to make use of the opportunity and bring pride to their country.
“The First Lady Clar Weah sends her congratulation message and she is very proud of you. Your families are also proud of you and so you should be proud of yourselves. You the only one that can make the best decision out of your life,” Madam Mediem said.
She added: “You were 600 hundred and only 19 made it. We are so happy that among 19 candidates who pass the test, 11 are girls. So, congratulation girls – girls usually shy away from the field of science, technology, and mathematics. You girls are the future, you have to take the message out there and encourage other girls.”
The 19 students who departed for La Côte d’Ivoire are the second batch of students that the French Development Agency has recruited thus far.
The project is an initiative of the Liberian government with funding from the government of France, through the French Development Agency (AFD). It aims to provide young Liberians the opportunity to specialize in various engineering sciences and technology disciplines to become employable and productive.
The recruitment exercise was being coordinated by the Office of the First Lady Clar Weah in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and the University of Liberia.
Out of 600 students, 19 were selected to be part of the second batch of students to go to La Côte d’Ivoire. The second batch of 19 students will make a total of 40 students targeted to benefit from the project that is being funded by the French government in response to President George Weah’s request to the French Government.
It can be recalled that, during President Weah’s first state visit to Paris, France in February 2018, he engaged French President Emmanuel Macron on the need to build the capacity of Liberian youth to addressing unemployment in the country.
In response to this request, the French government provided one million euros through its international development agency (AFD) giving rise to this scholarship scheme which is being implemented by the Institut National Polytechnique- Houphouët-Boigny (INP-HB).
The first batch of students, comprising of seventeen (17) males and four (4) females were recruited last year and have already undergone their first year of study, and the second batch of students are comprised of 11 females and eight males.