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    Dr. Kamel Opens the annual International Cisco Academy conference in Egypt

    Cairo, 16 July 2006

    The Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT) hosted the annual International Cisco Network Academy conference, opened by Dr. Tarek Kamel, Minister of Communications and Information Technology.

    The conference is part of the strategic cooperation between MCIT and international private sector establishments in the fields of training, human development and Communications and Information Technology (CIT) know-how exchange in Egypt.

    During the conference it was announced that the National Telecommunication Institute (NTI) was to become a regional institute offering specialized services in teacher training across the Middle East and Africa via Cisco Academy programs. Dr. Kamel stated during his speech that the NTI is a center of regional excellence and would be offering its services from a new location from the Smart Village next year. He also said that Ciscoís participation in the Egyptian Educational Initiative (EEI) would encourage all participants to further cooperate in the future.

    Dr. Ahmed El-Sherbini, Director of the NTI, confirmed that the Institute is considered to be the second regional institute in the region and would be offering not-for-profit Training-of-Trainers services using Cisco academy programs in addition to other specialized training programs serving the Middle East and Africa. NTI would also supervise a number of local academies, combining its regional role with a local one, added El-Sherbini.

    The conference began with a welcome note from HE the Minister of CIT. The first session reviewed the achievements of the Cisco Network Academy jointly with MCIT and in cooperation with the NTI, the e-Learning Competence Center (eLCC) and the IT clubs the Ministry is establishing in cooperation with Egyptian civil society organizations.

    In addition, Dr. Kamel presented the prizes for Best Local Academy and Best Trainee. The future vision for the growth of the Cisco Network Academy program in the Middle East and Africa was presented during the second session of the conference. The last session constituted a show-case of the most recent developments in technology as well as success stories in this field such as that unfolding now at Menoufiya University.

    The Cisco Network Academy has realized exponential growth of 119% in one year within the framework of the Cisco Academy initiative and fruitful cooperation with the government sector, international information technology companies, and international civil society establishments.

    There are now 35 academies working under the Cisco Network program umbrella, with 315 graduates by mid-2006 from several Egyptian governorates. Besides, there are two regional and ten local academies in cooperation with MCIT. The Cisco Network Academy works to enable its students to strengthen their skills and knowledge in the field of CIT, aiding them in achieving competency that is high enough to meet the needs of the local and international job market.

    The Cisco Network Academy initiative works with a number of Egyptian public and private universities including Cairo University, Azhar University, Menoufiya University, Zagazig University, the Arab Academy for Science and Technology and Maritime Transport, Ahram Canadian University and other Egyptian educational institutions; in all, there are approximately 1700 students in the Cisco program currently. The Cisco International Academy presents its educational program within the framework of international electronic learning, specifically designed for training on designing, building and operating computer networks. The program began functioning internationally in 1997 and now has over 400 thousand students from ten (10) thousand educational institutions and 149 countries.

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