By Pierre Omadjela Tangomo
In October, I traveled to Kamina in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to lead a three-day training on how to use the e-readers with the students and staff in the school of theology at Kamina Methodist University. I worked with a local trainer, Sebastien Kasongo, who’s already familiar with the Kindles. Together, we were welcomed by the university.
The first morning, we began the training with an opening prayer by the Deputy Dean Rev. Kasongo Kazadi. Then Virginie Umba Ndolo, Dean of the Faculty, explained the purpose of the E-Reader Project and its importance to the students and faculty.
We taught for over three hours working through the outline of the training; using the Kindle, explaining the icons on the device, how to underline, mark a page, and add notes while reading.
Our second day at the university was focused toward the students. The goal was to let them become more familiar with the device. We walked the group through connecting the Kindle to the internet and how to download documents and books from the cloud, including the Louis Segond Bible, which is a favorite among the students. The last day of training, we turned our attention to the teachers and faculty who will be using the e-readers in the classroom.
Many students and members of the staff were unfamiliar with the devices; our visit was the first organized training for the university since 2015. Kamina has limited connectivity and electricity – we needed to rent a generator to charge the Kindles for our visit. We recommended to university leaders the school learn to rely on solar power to keep the Kindles charged. We also discussed with the school about organizing their own trainings locally with the project manager, Kasongo, as the users become more comfortable with the device.
We pray for God to continue assisting the Kamina Methodist University and for the support of the E-reader Project to keep growing every day.
The E-Readers for Theological Education initiative is a partnership with Higher Education and Ministry and Discipleship Ministries and is committed to providing e-libraries on e-readers with important theological texts to the libraries of United Methodist-related and sponsored theological schools in Africa and the Philippines. Learn more about the E-Reader project and donate today ª