SLANSHEI Members’ Forum and Annual Dinner 2023 took place on the 17th of March, at the Raffles Residence in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The event was graced by guests of honour, Mr. Orlando Edwards, Country Director of the British Council, and Mr. Ashique Ali, Chairman of SLASSCOM (Sri Lanka Association of Software and Services Companies). The occasion brought together management and senior staff from the 13 member institutions, providing a platform to exchange ideas and thoughts on the future of Sri Lanka’s thriving non-state higher education sector.
During the event, Ashique Ali, in his speech, emphasized the importance of early training for IT undergraduates and the need to develop a portfolio of IT projects before graduating from university. He highlighted SLASSCOM’s commitment to supporting this endeavor by providing workshops and project opportunities for students, which would help them gain practical experience before completing their undergraduate studies. This initiative will assist with the industry’s need for graduates who can bring with them not just raw talent, but also the ability to work on projects with minimal training. Training graduates early and thereby ensuring they perform effectively in the industry aligns with SLASSCOM’s vision of nurturing local talent and promoting Sri Lanka as a global IT destination.
Orlando Edwards, the Country Director of the British Council, also addressed the audience and spoke about the growth of Transnational Education (TNE) partnerships in Sri Lanka. He remarked that Sri Lanka is one of the UK’s largest TNE partners, with over 4,500 students currently enrolled in British programs in the country. He expressed his enthusiasm to work with institutions in Sri Lanka to further develop the higher education sector and strengthen the partnership between the two countries.
The Members’ Forum and Annual Dinner which was attended by representatives from all member institutions of SLANSHEI (Sri Lanka Association of National State Higher Education Institutions), provided a relaxed and enjoyable atmosphere for networking and socializing. The attendees had the opportunity to connect with colleagues from other institutions, exchange ideas, and build relationships that could potentially lead to future collaborations and partnerships. It facilitated meaningful discussions on the challenges and opportunities in higher education in Sri Lanka, and how collaborative efforts can be made to address them.