Speaking to the media after his meeting with the President [of Kazakhstan], the Aga Khan explained that the University of Central Asia was a regional institution “intended to give students and faculty real capacity to think on a regional basis.” Underlining the secular nature of the University, the Aga Khan said that “it will teach civilisation — in the widest context. It will not teach religion as theology.”

“We started with the programme of extended education — this programme is for those people, for specialists who already work, and posses a profession,” (Khabar News, Kazakhstan, 1 May 2003)

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AKDN Press Release

His Highness the Aga Khan accompanied by the Minister for Education, Ms. Shamsha Berkimbayeva, visited Taldykorgan region of Almaty Oblast to view potential sites for the Kazakh campus of the University of Central Asia….

The Aga Khan, who was accompanied by officers of the University, was received in Taldykorgan by the Akim of Almaty Oblast, Mr. Kulmakhanov. He visited sites in and near Tekeli, a mountain town three hours from Almaty and near the Chinese border, where facilities for the regional institution will be located.

Yesterday, the Aga Khan briefed President Nursultan Nazarbayev on the development of the new university, which will involve the construction of equally important facilities in the three founding states.

Speaking to the media after his meeting with the President, the Aga Khan explained that the University of Central Asia was a regional institution “intended to give students and faculty real capacity to think on a regional basis.” Underlining the secular nature of the University, the Aga Khan said that “it will teach civilisation — in the widest context. It will not teach religion as theology.”

Emphasising that the University would have a means-blind admission policy, the Aga Khan explained that admissions would be merit-based and irrespective of a student’s background or financial status. Students would be expected to pay fees, but no qualified student who was admitted would be denied an education for lack of funds. Noting that the research that universities of quality were required to undertake to maintain their standing made them very expensive to operate, he said that even full fee-paying students generally contribute only about 25% to the actual cost of their education, the remainder being subsidised by the university.

Khabar News

“We started with the programme of extended education — this programme is for those people, for specialists who already work, and posses a profession,” said Prince Karim Aga Khan, President of Aga Khan’s Development Organization.

SOURCES

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