Kardan University Organizes the Graduation Ceremony for Fifty two Graduates of the English for Journalists and Export-Oriented Business Professionals Program

Kardan University Organizes the Graduation Ceremony for Fifty two Graduates of the English for Journalists and Export-Oriented Business Professionals Program

Kardan University, in collaboration with the U.S. Embassy Kabul, organized a graduation ceremony for the Fifty two graduates of the English for Journalists and Export-Oriented Business Professionals Program, also known as the English for Specific Purpose project (ESP), on April 10, 2021.

The project goal was to improve the English proficiency of journalists in their reporting and increase Afghanistan's capacity for international trade and transactions by improving communication for export-oriented business professionals. Journalism is traditionally taught in Dari and Pashto languages in Afghanistan. While this has helped develop qualified national journalists who understand the local context, many Afghan journalists still do not have the required skills, knowledge, and abilities to understand and engage with regional and international issues.

Because of the nature of their work, many journalists continue to draw their information from local and national sources without leveraging the full potential of technology, international think-tanks, independent media outlets, and engaging with leading journalists and international scholars. Also, the Afghan journalists have been unable to communicate Afghanistan's developments and security-related issues to the international institutions, media outlets, and other international audiences. This language barrier is a fundamental obstacle to Afghan journalists' ability to reflect and promote the massive changes and developments, and success stories that have been achieved with the support of American funding and other international allies. Through the English language training to the emerging and leading male and female Afghan journalists, this project enables the development of journalism professionals who are tech-savvy, globally-minded, and intellectually rigorous as enabling them to contact international research and experts with extensive networks in the international media community. In the long-term, the project will contribute to the institutional development of media outlets through training a new generation of journalism cadre who possess advanced language skills, global awareness, and cultural sensitivities.

"This is a unique program which not only helps journalists and business professionals improve their English language skills but also provides an invaluable opportunity to expand their professional network, share their experiences and work on prospective joint projects," said Jahnzeb Ahmadzai, ESP Project Manager.

Similarly, there is a critical need for expanded trade and investment in Afghanistan. The government of Afghanistan has made economic growth and self-sufficiency among its most important priorities, as evidenced by increased bilateral agreements, air corridors, trade agreements, and national infrastructure development. However, Afghan businesses and trade environment remains highly traditional with limited access to financing technology and international linkages. While the recent efforts by the U.S. government in Afghanistan to connect Afghan traders and exporters with regional and global markets have produced some results, there are many missed opportunities. Through enhanced English language skills training, export-oriented professionals can conduct market research, identify potential investors, participate meaningfully in international trade exhibitions and fairs, and strengthen their commercial viability as a result of improved linguistic and cultural understanding.

Furthermore, training and equipping Afghan businessmen and women with language skills is a critical prerequisite for increasing access to Afghan products and services in the international market. Specifically, the carpet industry, dry fruits, vegetables, and other partners associated with the Export Promotion Agency of Afghanistan will be necessary to attract American and Afghan interests related to economic development.

Sonia Azatyar, a Business Stream graduate of this project, said, "With the help of ESP Program, I was able to improve my business vocabulary, business writing, business communication, presentation skills. Now I see more improvement in the progress of my work. I believe that these programs are extremely important because most of the people who run businesses in Afghanistan have poor skills in English communication or don't know English at all. Most of the time, they have to present their products verbally and non-verbally to their customers. They often can't take part in global markets because they cannot communicate with those people (sellers and customers) in English face challenges. I can say that this was a great learning opportunity. Thanks to the U.S. Embassy and Kardan University for this opportunity."

To explore more about this program, please visit https://kardan.edu.af/News/General/9264.