Turkey’s Yunus Emre Institute, in collaboration with the University of Rwanda, has started offering Turkish courses. The classes, which started on July 5, have received a great deal of attention from students, according to Turkey’s envoy to Kigali, Burcu Çevik.
” It was planned that the courses would be held both as personal and online lessons. But due to the latest COVID-19 measures introduced in Rwanda, all classes need to be changed to online at the moment, Çevik said in a virtual interview.
Cevik said the start of the courses follows a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the Yunus Emre Institute and the University of Rwanda that will be reached sometime back. She said the institute now has an office on the university’s premises and a Turkish lecturer was seconded to the university in May to offer Turkish lessons, promote Turkish culture in Rwanda and encourage academic cooperation between Turkish and Rwandan universities.
Çevik said that Turkey and Rwanda have already signed 20 co-operation agreements in areas ranging from education to trade and investment, adding that her country supports Rwanda in its efforts to strengthen its human capital in all areas. Turkey has also provided full scholarships for Rwandan students to come to Turkey for undergraduate and graduate education. So far, more than 200 Rwandan students have benefited, the diplomat said.
Yunus Emres Enes Karaçoban, who teaches Turkish at the University of Rwanda, said he was pleased to see the number of students applying for the course increase. “As I speak with you now, 150 students have signed up to learn Turkish,” Karaçoban said in a virtual interview from Kigali.
Karaçoban said he was pleased to see some of the students come from outside Rwanda. Some of the applicants are from Burundi, Mozambique, Djibouti and South Africa. He said the students will receive an introductory course of 36 hours, and the first group of students is expected to complete their courses in August.
“If all goes well after the COVID-19 restrictions, I have many promises from students who are willing to continue face to face,” he said. Karaçoban said that many of those who choose to learn Turkish want to take advantage of it for business communication and educational purposes. He said Rwanda is a safe country that he believes is good for business and cultural development.
“I have been here in Rwanda for the last two months. I had a good experience. I met different people from Rwanda who are very helpful. I had the chance to meet academics from the Turkish government scholarship program who have supported me since my arrival,” he added. .
The coronavirus pandemic has affected education, and the most personal education has become more risky every day. Therefore, Turkey’s Yunus Emre Institute, which has the task of promoting the Turkish language and culture around the world, has started providing one-to-one language lessons to 60,000 people online using a variety of technical infrastructures.