Energy is a major issue in the world. More than 80% of the energy comes from fossil fuels, a finite resource unevenly distributed beneath the Earth’s surface. Thus, reserves of fossil fuels are progressively decreasing and their continued use produces harmful pollutants and greenhouse gases associated with global warming and climate change. But energy is a basic necessity for human activity and economic and social development.
In its Fourth Assessment Report, the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC) has confirmed that climate change is real and Africa is “one of the most vulnerable continents to climate change and climate variability”. The continent vulnerability is exacerbated, by endemic poverty, economic and institutional weakness, and limited access to infrastructure, technology and energy. Thus, for its ongoing development, Africa needs more energy despite its vulnerability to the changing climate.
Moreover, the region continues to face several critical challenges related to its energy sector such as energy access, energy security and unsustainable use of wood resources. The main challenge remains how to satisfy the increasing energy demand without exacerbating observed social, economic and environmental problems caused by the changing climate. This international Master Research Program in Climate Change and Energy (MRP-CCE) lead by Abdou Moumouni University of Niamey, in Niger and implemented in collaboration with renowned African, German and others international universities and institutions, aims at offering top-ranking students an integrated learning environment in which they acquire skills that qualify them as climate change and energy specialists.
The MRP-CCE is designed to prepare the next generation to address the energy challenges of adaptation and resilience to climate change in West Africa. The program interdisciplinary approach allows a better understanding of West Africa energy infrastructures, their strength and weaknesses, energy policies, practices in a changing climate context and the search for sustainable solutions.
Through this present call; Abdou Moumouni University of Niamey is launching its four-semesters, two year Master’s Program on Climate Change and ENERGY for the academic year 2013-2014. The program provides full scholarship to successful candidates from WASCAL member countries. Potential candidates are invited to submit an application for selection.
The main objective of this Master is to prepare and train a new generation of interdisciplinary professionals capable of proposing adapted solutions to face the above-mentioned climate change and energy crisis. Upon completion of their study, graduates are expected to be able to:
Demonstrate an understanding of the science related to a changing climate and global warming, knowledge of the impacts of climate change, vulnerability of natural systems and the built environment, and methods for adaptation;
Develop a comprehension of energy production, delivery, and consumption for both traditional systems and sustainable energy alternatives with special emphasis on energy efficiency, energy managementand local available renewable energy.
The Master Research Program-Climate Change and Energy (MRP-CCE) is opened to excellent students and Engineers with a Bachelor of Science Degree in scientific or in engineering disciplines with (Mention Assez-bien or Second class Upper or equivalent). Candidates with technical strengths in Physics, Chemistry, Civil & Environmental, Electrical or Mechanical Engineering are preferred.
Requirements of candidates to the program:
i- Be citizen of one of the following countries member of WASCAL: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire, the Gambia, Ghana, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal and Togo;
ii- Submit a letter of motivation,
iii- Provide all transcripts and copy of diploma,
iv- Provide letter of recommendation from three references,
v- Provide a Curriculum vitae,
vi- Francophone candidates must have an intermediate level of English (see Language section below).
The program will admit a maximum of 10 students. There shall be equitable distribution of students across the WASCAL countries (one student per country). Additional selected students may be accepted. They have to provide evidence of sponsorship and have to indicate that they can complete the program within the required period of 2 years.
The Master Research Program-Climate Change and Energy will be conducted in English. The following are the language requirements:
Basic Certificate in English Language;
Functional Certificate in English Language;
Francophone candidates must have an intermediate level of English. In general, a computer-based TOEFL score of 213 (or the equivalent) is required for their entry into the WASCAL graduate research programs. Applicants with limited English skills are encouraged to use the time between application and interview, to attend English training classes at their own expense.
Please note that 3 months English proficiency course will be provided to selected francophone students at the University of Cape Coast, in Ghana, to help meet entry requirements.
SCHOLARSHIP AND RESEARCH SUPPORT
The scholarship and research support will normally be provided based on the criteria below:
After admission, students will be required to maintain a graduate level Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) of B or a minimum of B from the course;
During the course curriculum phase, students will be required to develop a detailed research program, including budget;
During the project/research stage, students are expected to present their progress reports regularly and be evaluated accordingly.
All scholarship-holding MRP fellows will receive a stipend of €350.00 per month to cover accommodation and other expenses for the duration of their study of two (2) years. Research support will also be made available to students after approval of their research budget by their advisor/supervisor and WASCAL.
The Master Research Program in Climate Change and Energy (MRP-CCE) is a twenty four (24) months program consisting of three (3) semesters of taught courses and one (1) semester intended to the student field work, thesis research, final write up and defense. Students will undertake training based on their area of specialization. The field work can be done in the MRP Lead University or other WASCAL institutions depending on expertise (supervisor), availability of equipment and accessibility to data.
Students are expected to prepare and defend a research proposal that will indicate clearly how they are going to carry out all aspect of their research. Student proposal will be presented to, and assessed by the faculty for viability through a seminar. The (proposal) plan should be completed validated before the end of the third semester of study by the student’s principal advisor and the MRP Director.
The expected employment opportunities after this formation are national and international government agencies, extractive industries and energy processing companies, such as oil companies, the mining industry, power producers, and equipment builders. Employment will also be found in environmental consulting companies, with local and international NGOs interested in environmental and energy issues. Graduates with high research capacities will also be able to integrate a relevant PhD program.
APPLICATION PROCEDURE AND CONTACT
Candidates may apply directly to the Mater Research Program by sending all required information to the director of MRP-CCE, Pr. Alassane Abdoulaye, via Email: email@example.com. The application form can be obtained via WASCAL website at www.wascal.org and the University Abdou Moumouni of Niamey website at http://www.uam.refer.ne
PUBLICATION OF THE SELECTION OUTCOME
University Abdou Moumouni of Niamey in collaboration with the MRP Climate Change and Energy Regional Advisory Board will short list candidates and will later select one candidate from each country. There may be the need for a selection interview via telephone or Skype. The date of the interview will be communicated after the short listing. The list of successful candidates will be published by July 15, 2013. All successful candidates will be required to submit a hardcopy of the application package.
Additional information regarding the WASCAL program could be found at WASCAL website at www.wascal.org