Higher Education

Haiti Table of Contents

Haiti's most important institution of higher education in the 1980s was the University of Haiti. Its origins date to the 1820s, when colleges of medicine and law were established. In 1942 the various faculties merged into the University of Haiti. After a student strike in 1960, the Duvalier government brought the university under firm government control and renamed it the State University. The government restored the original name in 1986.

In 1981 there were 4,099 students at the University of Haiti, of whom 26 percent were enrolled in the Faculty of Law and Economics; 25 percent, in the Faculty of Medicine and Pharmacy; 17 percent, in the Faculty of Administration and Management; and 11 percent, in the Faculty of Science and Topography. Despite the important role played by agriculture in the Haitian economy, only 5 percent of the university's students were enrolled in the Faculty of Agronomy and Veterinary Medicine. In 1981 the University of Haiti had 559 professors, compared with 207 in 1967. Most professors worked part time, were paid on an hourly basis, and had little time for contact with students. The University of Haiti also suffered severe shortages of books and other materials.

Two private post-secondary institutions were established in the 1980s--the Institut Universitaire Roi Christophe in CapHaïtien and the Institut International d'Etudes Universitaires in Port-au-Prince. Other private institutions of higher learning included a school of theology and law schools in Cap-Haïtien, Gonaïves, Les Cayes, Jérémie, and Fort Liberté. A business school, the Institut des Hautes Etudes Economiques et Commerciales, was established in Port-au-Prince in 1961. An engineering school, the Institut Supérieur Technique d'Haïti, was founded in Port-au-Prince in 1962. The Institut de Technique Electronique d'Haïti, also in Port-au-Prince, provided instruction in electrical engineering.

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Source: U.S. Library of Congress