Capacity building need for the Tubman University in Maryland County may no longer be a worrisome issue as it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the Morgan State University, to benefit in more areas of professional concern.
A dispatch from the Liberian Embassy in Washington D.C. indicates that the William V.S. Tubman University in Harper, Maryland County and Morgan State University signed a land-mark MOU with benefits to include but not limited to enhancing the preparation of a diverse and internationally competent workforce; developing undergraduate and graduate curricula that include theory and research on international topics relevant to Tubman University and Morgan State University.
Benefits of the MOU to Tubman University would also include expanding professional developments and continuing education opportunities, and professional programs offered by the two universities. They include but not limited to Architecture and Planning, Business Administration, Education, and Engineering.
The MOU according to the dispatch also includes advancing new online and distance education instructional modalities appropriate for international students and cross border studies.
The mutual interest of both universities in collaborating on international and inter-institutional educational development initiatives, curricula development, academic programs, and workforce development projects is consistent with the objectives of the 2007 sister-state program between the State of Maryland, USA and Bong and Maryland Counties in Liberia. It is also consistent with the U.S-Liberia Partnership Dialogue launched in 2013 by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
The objectives of the Sister-State Program Agreement are to enhance the “many opportunities for cooperation in business and industry, arts and culture, education” and also to “build long-term relationships, promote commercial cooperation and develop joint programs of exchange in all of these areas.”
In separate remarks prior to signing the MOU, Tubman University president, Dr. Elizabeth Davis-Russell and Morgan State University president, Dr. David Wilson, affirmed their commitment to making sure that the terms of the MOU are fully implemented for the benefits of the two institutions and countries.
In her remarks, Dr. Davis-Russell recalled that the Tubman University, formerly William V.S. Tubman College of Technology, was established after the war and is endeavoring to carry out its mission to provide quality educational experience and transform the lives of individuals for worthy services.
For Dr. Wilson whose institution is at the center of reliance assured that he is looking forward to full engagement with Tubman University in carrying out programs that would be mutually beneficial.
Also speaking at the ceremony, the Secretary of State for the State of Maryland, Honorable John P. McDonough, who is a staunch supporter of the Maryland Liberia Sister-State relationship, noted that the State of Maryland will continue to explore avenues to further concretize the relationship between the State of Maryland and Liberia.
Speaking on behalf of Liberia’s Ambassador to the United States, Jeremiah C. Sulunteh, Gabriel I.H. Williams, Minister Counselor for Press and Public Affairs at the Embassy of Liberia near Washington, D.C., indicated that the Government and people of Liberia welcome the MOU, and hope that it would be implemented for the benefits of the two universities and countries.
Mr. Williams also used the occasion to applaud three historically Black Colleges and Universities in the U.S. – Morgan State University, Howard University in Washington, D.C. and Tuskegee University in Tuskegee, Alabama –for the involvement of architecture students from those three universities in preparing an architectural design for the Tubman University E-brary and Learning Center.
Called the Harriet Tubman Centennial Architectural Design Challenge, architectural students from the three universities were engaged in a design challenge with each proposing a design for the E-brary and Learning Center.
For a final design, nine architectural students from the three universities recently traveled to Maryland County, Liberia for a first-hand experience. The final design of the E-brary was announced following presentation of three designs at a ceremony held at Howard University on June 27, 2014.
The W.V. S. Tubman E-brary is designed as a state of the art and futuristic project, which will be a regular library and learning center with electronic books that will enable students, faculty, and researchers to have access to books and other academic materials globally through the Internet.
The E-brary project is being driven by the W.V.S. Tubman University Foundation, and the Marylanders for Progress (MFP), a philanthropic organization of Marylanders in the U.S. contributing to the progress of Maryland County and Liberia as a whole. Mr. Gerald F.B. Cooper, member of the board of the Tubman University Foundation and the MFP, is the Chair of the W.V. S. Tubman E-brary project. The W.V.S. Tubman Foundation and MFP, together with the Maryland Liberia Sister State Committee, have been actively contributing to the progress in Maryland and Bong Counties in Liberia.
The MOU was signed on June 30, 2014 and was witnessed by many other people connected to the Morgan State University.
Among those at the signing of the MOU were members of the Board of Regents of Morgan State University, the Chair and members of the Board of the Tubman University Foundation, students involved with the E-brary architecture design, and faculty of Morgan State University.