NAICU Washington Update

Higher Education for Development Plans for Termination

December 17, 2013

After more than 20 years, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced it is ending its contractual funding arrangement for Higher Education for Development (HED) by September 30, 2015.

The long-standing agreement between USAID and the six presidential associations (AASCU, AAU, AACC, ACE, APLU, and NAICU), began in 1992. It established an office that fostered international development by funding and overseeing partnerships between higher education institutions in the U.S. and those in developing countries in Africa, South and Central American, the Middle East, and Asia. Expanding over the years, the HED partnerships focused on capacity building in areas such as health, agriculture, civil society, and women’s leadership.

While USAID has expressed satisfaction with HED’s work, in fact, the projected FY 2014 budget of nearly $24 million would have been the largest ever, the disappointing decision means reduced funding to carry out existing operations supporting the 55 current partnerships in 41 countries. According to USAID, the agency plans to work directly with colleges and universities once the contract ends. Several USAID in-country missions, however, have contributed funds to help maintain the partnerships until 2015 and would like to see them continue.

To prepare for end of the contract, HED is implementing several cost-savings initiatives, including staff reductions and restrictions on travel and conferences.. NAICU institutions Tulane University, Brown University, Fairfield University, Syracuse University, University of Richmond, American University, Columbia University, and Tuskegee University currently have HED grants. These grants will be completed prior to the closure of HED

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