Director of Public Affairs Evelyne Abitbol and her assistant Sandra DSylva
spent some time recently in Morocco, representing Concordia University
to thousands of potential students.
They attended a huge international educational fair in Casablanca, attended
by approximately 500,000 students over four days, and estimate that between
them, they spoke to about 400 students a day.
Representatives of universities and colleges from a number of countries
participated, but the great majority were from Great Britain, France and
Abitbol was impressed by initiatives undertaken in Morocco by some Quebec
universities. The Université de Sherbrooke, the Université
du Québec and some departments of the Université de Montréal
are already offering courses in Morocco.
Sherbrooke is the most advanced, with what they call the Collège
de Sherbrooke au Maroc. Abitbol said. The students enrol as
they would for the Université de Sherbrooke, and their application
is evaluated on the same basis as students in Quebec.
The applications are sent to Sherbrooke, and a member of the registrars
office goes to Morocco to complete the process. Both Quebec and local
professors teach the courses, and the students earn their diplomas from
the Université de Sherbrooke. They can come to Quebec to follow
up with graduate programs, if they wish.
About 95 per cent of these students want to study technology, engineering
or commerce. Abitbol discussed the possibility of adding a Concordia component
in English to the curriculum of the Collège de Sherbrooke au Maroc.
The director of the Collège plans to come to Quebec next month.
Another project involves a private college called Art-Com, which could
be described as a smaller version of Concordias new Hexagram project
in digital art. Art-Com comes under the jurisdiction of Moroccos
École Supérieure de Communication et de Publicité.
The directors are exploring the possibility of academic exchanges with
students and professors here.
School is the designation given in Morocco to post-secondary
institutions that specialize in subjects such as communications, architectural
preservation, handicrafts, digital art, and other such subjects. Abitbol
said that she was approached at the educational fair by representatives
of a number of these schools, looking for information and possible partnerships
in pursuing a double diploma, i.e., from a Quebec and a Morroccan
The Canadian government is organizing a Team Canada trip to Morocco in
the fall to support the developing presence of Canadian business and higher
education in the region. Quebec vice-premier and minister of research
Pauline Marois will be in Morocco next week to discuss communications