Russians tout nuclear expertise to Africans
April 5—The Russian state Atomic Energy Corporation, ROSATOM, has announced plans to train up to 60 young specialists from Africa to equip them with comprehensive knowledge and qualifications in design, construction and operation of nuclear facilities.
“Rosatom, offers broad range of opportunities for foreign students and young specialists to gain relevant knowledge necessary for the development of a national nuclear programme,” said Professor Dmitrii Samokhin, Head of Reactor Development and Design Department at the Russian National Research Nuclear University (MEPhI).
Rosatom has already signed agreements with Tanzania and Uganda; similar deals have been made with Kenya, Zambia, Ghana and Nigeria to have nuclear energy plants built in those countries.
The Uganda government has publicly stated an interest to develop nuclear energy as alternative option in the future. Professor Samokhin was speaking at the just concluded African Youth Nuclear summit hosted by Kenyan Young Generation in Nuclear (KYGN).
Rosatom’s bursary programme for nuclear education covers the student’s full education fee for a Bachelors or Master’s Degree, as well as significant discounts on local transport, food and dormitory fees.
Late last year, President Yoweri Museveni met with officials of the Russian firm in Kampala and they discussed areas for cooperation as the country worked towards building its first nuclear power plant by 2034. During the talks, Rastom promised to provide professional training in nuclear infrastructure development, staff training, public acceptance, nuclear medicine, and agriculture.
The African Youth Nuclear summit brought together students as well as junior and senior nuclear professionals from different spheres, all united by the common goal of further developing nuclear science and technology in Africa.
In some countries, the candidates are supposed to take part in a contest or an Olympiad that is aimed at the selection of best candidates. For example, in Bangladesh and Turkey candidates pass physics test that include tasks of the entry exams of Russian universities and are chosen based on their performance. Procedures may vary from country to country.
Having passed qualifying round, the documents of the candidate are submitted to the Ministry of Education and Science in Russia. After successful review of the documents the candidate is sent an official invitation to start studies at the university.