Representing higher education at 19CCEM

Representing higher education at 19CCEM

Published on 19 June 2015

The ACU will be representing the important role of higher education at the 19th Conference of Commonwealth Education Ministers (19CCEM), which kicks off in the Bahamas next week (22-26 June).

Themed around the tagline ‘Quality Education for Equitable Development: Performance, Paths and Productivity’, the event is set to host up to 1,000 delegates who will take part in various forums and meetings, including the Senior Officials’ Meeting, the Stakeholders’ Forum, and the Youth Forum.

Dr John Kirkland, the ACU's Deputy Secretary General, said: '19CCEM will be the first education ministers’ meeting to feature a dedicated session on higher education. This gives us an important platform to raise the profile of the work and impact of universities – and the ACU is looking forward to engaging ministers in a meaningful debate about the role that the Commonwealth can play in supporting the sector.'

Indeed, the ACU will be hosting, chairing, and presenting at several sessions, thanks to its delegation of staff and Council members. The delegation consists of:

  • Professor Danny Donoghue – Dean for Internationalisation, Durham University, UK
  • Dr John Kirkland – Deputy Secretary General, ACU (and Executive Secretary, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK)
  • Ms Natasha Lokhun, Communications Manager, ACU and Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK
  • Professor James McWha – Vice Chancellor, University of Rwanda and ACU Council Treasurer
  • Professor Olive Mugenda – Vice Chancellor, Kenyatta University, Kenya and ACU Council Chair
  • Professor John Wood – Secretary General, ACU

A delegation from the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission, for which the ACU provides the Secretariat, will also be attending:

  • Ms Deborah Bennett – Programme Manager, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK
  • Ms Ofure Idialu – Commonwealth Scholar from Nigeria
  • Mr Edister Jamu – Commonwealth Scholar from Malawi
  • Mr Richard Middleton – Chair, Commonwealth Scholarship Commission in the UK

Between them, the delegation will be presenting and debating on various key issues, including the Sustainable Development Goals, commercialisation of higher education, research and its applications, the impact of scholarships, and student and staff mobility. The findings from our The world beyond 2015 – Is higher education ready? campaign will also be presented to ministers.

Our aim is to generate positive support and aligned ambitions for the role of higher education across the Commonwealth’s countries in the context of the United Nations’ post-2015 agenda and soon to be adopted Sustainable Development Goals.

You can keep up-to-date with the ACU’s involvement at 19CCEM by following our Twitter account (@The_ACU); there will also be regular updates from the Commonwealth Secretariat (@commonwealthsec) and the Commonwealth Scholarship Commission (@commschols), too.

To find out more about 19CCEM, visit the Government of the Bahamas official website: