Reinforcing the preparatory classes in Ivory Coast
Since 2018, École Polytechnique has contributed to restructuring and reinforcing the preparatory classes in Ivory Coast. Each year, four students of the Ingénieur polytechnicien program complete their human and civilian training at Institut National Polytechnique Felix Houphouët-Boigny (INP-HB) or one of the partnering high schools in Ivory Coast and lend support to students enrolled in the local preparatory classes for admission to the Grandes École. They assist in preparing for the entrance exams, particularly the physics and mathematics parts. Furthermore, École Polytechnique participates in cross-exchanges for professors from the prestigious Lycée Louis-le-Grand, teaching in the preparatory classes, and their counterparts in Ivory Coast to enable them to share educational expertise and best practices.
The cooperation to reinforce the preparatory classes in Ivory Coast occurs within the program for the development, education, and integration of the young "Défi-Jeunes 2". Funded by the Debt Reduction and Development contract (C2D), the program was managed by the French Agency for Development (AFD). The cooperation to reinforce the preparatory classes started in October 2018 and involved several high schools in Yamoussoukro and Abidjan.
Results prove successful
The significant improvement of the students' results in international entrance examinations for the Grandes Écoles reflects the adaptation of teaching practices, the harmonization of evaluation methods, and the commitment of the administration and teaching body of Ivory Coast's high schools of excellence. The partners celebrated the program's success at the closing ceremony on October 20-21, 2022.
Today, the preparatory classes of INP-HB are getting known throughout West Africa and welcome candidates from Ivory Coast and other African countries. Since 2018, 33 candidates from INP-HB's preparatory classes have passed the entrance exam for École Polytechnique. Among them is a student from Guinea Conakry, illustrating the regional attractiveness of INP-HB.
Moussa Diaby, Director General of INP-HB, Joël Bianco, Principal of the Lycée Louis-le-Grand, and Dominique Rossin, Provost of École Polytechnique, also commended the many activities organized as part of the project. An essential component of the program, the training sessions for physics and mathematics teachers at the Lycée Louis-Le-Grand and École Polytechnique enabled teachers from Ivory Coast to meet their counterparts in France and benefit from each other’s experience. In addition, a trip to Paris, organized in April 2022 for the eight best students within the INP-HB preparatory classes, allowed them to fully immerse in the preparatory classes at the Lycée Louis-Le-Grand for a week.
Education, training, and integration of young persons
As part of the program for the development of education, training, and integration of young persons, "Défi-Jeunes 2", the government of Ivory Coast received a grant from the French Development Agency (second part of C2D). Higher education was one of the three components of the program. Institut National Polytechnique Felix Houphouët-Boigny, one of the key players in engineering training in sub-Saharan Africa, received funding to modernize its educational offer with the support of French Grandes Écoles.
Taking into account the strategic role the preparatory classes play in its educational offer, INP-HB turned to two French institutions, École Polytechnique and the Lycée Louis-Le-Grand, both a reference in their domains.