UDSM to sign MoU with Chinese varsity to enrich academic, cultural experiences

By Zuwena Shame , The Guardian
Published at 06:00 AM Jul 10 2024
The University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM)
Photo: Courtesy of UDSM
The University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM)

THE University of Dar es Salaam (UDSM) through the Department of Creative Arts is poised to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Northwestern Polytechnical University of China with an aim to enrich academic and cultural experiences for both students and faculty members.

Dr Daines Sanga, Head of the department made the announcement in Dar es Salaam yesterday during the China-Tanzania Youth Cultural Exchange Gala held at varsity’s Chinese Library. The gala forms part of a series of activities to commemorate the 60th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Tanzania.

She emphasized the potential benefits of the MoU, highlighting opportunities for UDSM’s students and teachers to receive specialized training in areas such as proposal writing, academic publications and cultural exchange.

Dr Sanga underscored the importance of exposure for UDSM students, many of whom lack opportunities to study abroad. This collaboration promises to provide them with invaluable educational experiences.

“We anticipate that these relationships will foster productive academic and cultural exchanges, enabling our students to cultivate cultural tolerance, which is one of the essential components of international relations,” Dr Sanga remarked.

She added that during this period where Tanzania and China have strong relations, cultural tolerance is very important, as many Chinese people are in Tanzania and many Tanzanians are in China.

Dr Sanga stressed that following robust Tanzanian-Chinese relations, understanding each other’s cultures is crucial, especially given the significant presence of both Tanzanians in China and Chinese nationals in Tanzania.

 She also highlighted the potential for UDSM’s visibility to increase through enhanced educational opportunities, including faculty development in proposal writing and academic publications.

Zhang Qingjiang, Director of the Art Education Centre at Northwestern Polytechnical University emphasized the longstanding diplomatic ties between China and Tanzania, which have facilitated substantial economic and cultural exchanges.

Qingjiang expressed confidence that the MoU would deepen educational cooperation, academic research, and cultural heritage preservation between the universities, stressing the importance of nurturing global-minded talents and contributing to both countries’ scientific and social development.

He said that the strong support from the Chinese embassy and companies in Tanzania have helped to build broader space for communication, which has promoted closer cooperation and deeper friendship between the two sides hence the concerted efforts and joint efforts. 

He added that the cooperation between China and Tanzania in the field of education will surely bear fruitful results, bring more benefits to the people of the two countries, and inject continuous vitality into the development of the two countries.

John Zheng, Chairman of the Shaanxi Chamber of Tanzania, echoed support for the MoU, noting its potential to formalise and expand educational cooperation between the universities.

He emphasized the significance of youth exchanges in strengthening bilateral ties and fostering future leaders. 

He said that youth are the hope of the country and the hope of the world and the exchange of students from the two universities stand a powerful testament to the deep friendship between China and Tanzania.

The signing of the MoU represents a pivotal step towards fostering enduring friendships and mutual cooperation between the University of Dar es Salaam and Northwestern Polytechnical University, setting the stage for a vibrant cultural and academic partnership.