Combating The Brain Drain

This week, I am back from Haiti and busy coordinating with a number of organizations in Haiti who are interested in collaborating with us to help even more Haitian students access higher education. This is great news!
Haiti, even prior to January’s earthquake, had extremely high emigration rates. In fact, in relation to its population, Haiti is considered to be the ‘largest exporter of skilled workers in the world’. The earthquake compounded the brain drain, as many of Haiti’s most educated and skilled survivors left the country in search of better opportunities abroad.
Given this background, what University of the People is seeking to do in Haiti takes on added importance. We are not only providing tuition-free higher education to Haiti’s youth, we are also, crucially, providing a means for Haitians to remain in Haiti where they can assist in rebuilding the country. Indeed, wherever I went in Haiti, community and business leaders enthused about UoPeople’s project for precisely this reason.
Our first 16 students have commenced their studies at a dedicated Student Computer Center in Port-au-Prince. We are in the process of speaking to organizations in Haiti about establishing further centers where students can access their studies.
Together we hope to help combat the brain drain that has so afflicted Haiti. Do you know of other countries that also struggle with their own brain drains?

Read more about the Haiti project here.


About President Shai Reshef

Starting in 1989, Shai Reshef served as chairman of the Kidum Group, a test preparation company, which he sold in 2005 to Kaplan, one of the world’s largest education companies. While chairman of Kidum, he built an online university affiliated with the University of Liverpool, enrolling students from more than 100 countries; that business was sold to Laureate, another large for-profit education company, in 2004. A vessel for universal higher education, UoPeople has the enormous potential to function as a global stimulus package, reaching even the most remote and poorest places on earth. Our ultimate mission is to democratize higher education and, if the past two years are any indication, this is not merely a pipe dream.
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