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ULCHS, BRIDGE-U: Liberia launch medical academic hub

By Lincoln G. Peters 

The University of Liberia College of Health Sciences (ULCHS), in partnership with the USAID-funded BRIDGE–U: Liberia project, on Tuesday, 21 June 202 officially launched the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Innovation (CTLI).

The project is part of a strong partnership and collaboration between the United States of America and the Republic of Liberia.

CTLI is a public-private academic hub for research utilization, inter-professional training, innovation, and knowledge generation in Liberia.

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It will deliver in several key areas which include faculty development programming; Camp xSEL, an annual science camp for secondary school students and research on utilizing evidence in the health sciences.

Other areas are the Experiential Learning and Assessment Lab (ELAB), a clinical simulation center at John F. Kennedy Medical Center, evidence-based decision-making courses for current policymakers, innovation and entrepreneurship training, mentorship, and venture incubation.

Officially launching the CTLI, the Deputy Chief of Mission at the United States Embassy near Monrovia Mr. Joel F. Maybury said launching CTLI was an especially proud moment as he stands at the intersection of several different partnerships between the United States and Liberia.

“The launch of the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Innovation is yet another great achievement that marks our long-standing partnership,” said Mr. Maybury.

he said the CTLI will serve as a gateway to modern health education technology for the next generation of essential health workers – doctors, nurses, administrators, and faculty.

“Most importantly, the CTLI will be a source of research information for entrepreneurs who are expected to improve their business initiatives using research-based evidence,” Mr.  Maybury said.

According to him, these projects are models of innovation and impact, demonstrating the tremendous change that can be achieved through partnership and collaboration. 

“Our U.S. university and other partners are working side-by-side with the University of Liberia and Tubman University, just as we at the Embassy work side-by-side with the Ministry of Health to reimagine medical education in Liberia,” the U.S. envoy said.

He indicated that the U.S. government is proud of the many ways in which its assistance improves health outcomes for the Liberian people.

Speaking further, Mr. Maybury noted that strengthening the health workforce is a priority for every country, and as has been seen during the COVID-19 pandemic, there is no time to waste. 

“Strong leaders, competent clinicians, and innovative entrepreneurs need research information to prepare for and respond to pandemics such as the COVID-19,” he urged.

“I am impressed with your innovative and strategic vision to establish the CTLI which serves this purpose.”

Mr. Maybury then acknowledged the Minister of Health of Liberia, Dr. Wilhemina Jallah, the President of the University of Liberia, Dr. Julius Sarwolo Nelson, the Vice President, UL College of Health Sciences, Dr. Bernice Dahn and other officials of the university who have participated in this important work.

He also acknowledged the U.S. Government’s implementing partners with whom he said they are administering these programs.

In a special statement, UL President Prof. Dr. Julius Sarwolo Nelson thanked the leadership of the College of Health Sciences in person of Dr. Bernice T. Dahn and her entire team for the work and collaboration with partners in bringing the project to fruition.

Dr. Nelson said the ULCHS remains grateful to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and other partners for their faith and investment in the country.

He expressed confidence that the Center for Teaching, Learning and Innovation and all related programs will be very transformational for the faculty and students. 

“I am also excited because the Center will serve as a hub for collaborative training and innovation with the larger community, including clinicians, policymakers, and entrepreneurs,” said Dr. Nelson.

He said universities are a part of the fabric of the community, and it is UL’s privilege and mission to promote lifelong learning and research in partnership with neighboring institutions and colleagues.

Dr. Nelson explained that the opening of the CTLI is a momentous occasion, which builds on years of progress at the College of Health Sciences and ushering in a new era for high-quality and professional health education.

“As the need for clinical training continues to remain critical for quality health profession training, we also realize that our own campus needs continuous strengthening,” he said.

Dr. Nelson assured that UL will continue to work with its partners at the John F. Kennedy Memorial Medical Center, and elsewhere, to make sure that they are providing students with well-equipped faculties and quality supervision and mentorship.

The University of Liberia College of Health Sciences (ULCHS) is the flagship public higher education institution responsible for training Liberia’s clinicians, researchers, health policymakers, and innovators.

ULCHS is poised to become a globally recognized leader in research utilization, meaningfully connecting academics with policy-making innovation, and clinical practice.

Home to Liberia’s sole medical and pharmacy schools and schools of public health and midwifery, ULCHS is the strategic lead and main implementing partner for the BRIDGE-U: Liberia project.


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