Purdue faculty can help educate African youth through PARI’s GDI, USAID

Photo caption: Dr. Jennifer DeBoer presenting on the Advancing Learning Outcomes in Africa (ALOA) contract on March 7th.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — More than 30 Purdue University faculty members learned how their expertise can bolster a U.S. Agency for International Development endeavor for youth programming in sub-Saharan Africa.

Faculty of Purdue’s colleges of Agriculture, Education, Health and Human Sciences and Liberal Arts on March 7 were briefed on the Advancing Learning Outcomes in Africa (ALOA) contract, a vehicle to provide support services to USAID missions in sub-Saharan Africa and to the Africa Regional Bureau Education team.

Support will include conducting assessments and evaluations, piloting and scaling innovative local solutions and boosting capacity in USAID missions and local partner organizations. All this is with the goal to increase the effectiveness of education and youth interventions and advance education outcomes in Africa.

The gathering gave faculty, students and staff in attendance an overview of ALOA and the Purdue Applied Research Institute’s Global Development and Innovation (GDI) division, which oversees the project.

“ALOA is an incredible opportunity for Purdue faculty to showcase their strengths and existing collaborations while working alongside fellow educators in multiple countries in Africa to enhance learning,” said Jennifer DeBoer, GDI’s director of practice for education and youth. She also is an associate professor of engineering education and mechanical engineering at Purdue.

“We are excited by the obvious connections between ALOA and our faculty expertise in teaching, learning and assessment. College of Education faculty are already engaged in a variety of international projects, including research and engagement efforts in nearly a dozen countries,” said Phillip VanFossen, interim dean and Ackerman Distinguished Professor at Purdue. “That commitment to working on a global scale is also reflected in our very successful study abroad programs — the proportion of College of Education students who participate in study abroad is among the highest on campus.”

ALOA is a five-year contract for analytical and implementation services to USAID’s Africa Bureau and to missions and offices in USAID-supported countries throughout Africa. It has an estimated ceiling value of $65 million for buy-ins from USAID Missions in 21 sub-Saharan countries, of which GDI currently is allocated core funding of about $1.7 million.

ALOA is led by International Development Group , a federal government contractor that fulfills global development projects. The Arlington, Virginia-based firm was awarded the contract under OASIS, a family of small-business, governmentwide multiple award, indefinite delivery/indefinite quantity contracts providing flexible, innovative solutions for complex professional services.

The Africa Bureau supports education and youth programming in basic and higher education in 21 bilateral missions in sub-Saharan Africa covering English, French and Portuguese. The Africa Regional Bureau Education team supports additional missions and regional for education and youth services throughout Africa and in Sahel.

For more information, contact Jennifer DeBoer deboerj@purdue.edu

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