Maryknoll Institute of African Studies

East African ebony carving


Academically Affiliated

Saint Mary's University
of Minnesota / USA
Tangaza University College
Nairobi, Kenya

Fr. Michael Kirwen is the Director of MIAS

The primary goal of the MIAS program is to teach, systematically, contemporary cultures and religion of East Africa in such a way that students begin to appropriate and articulate an African perspective on these realities. It is designed for the following types of postgraduate students: 1) All African students, whether religious or lay, involved in pastoral, educational, medical and/or developmental programs for systematic introduction and/or updating in contemporary African life and reality, 2) all missionary personnel including priests, sisters, seminarians, and laity assigned to apostolates in East Africa for primary acculturation and/or updating, 3) neophyte lecturers and students from outside Africa for a systematic introduction into African cultural knowledge. 4) NGO personnel and diplomats both new and veteran 5) Visitors to Africa who seek more than a tourist experience.

The programs are designed to meet the needs of both degree students and continuing education students. The programs are ecumenical and open to students of all faiths. The institute's corporate owner and sponsor is the Africa Region of the Maryknoll Fathers & Brothers, and it is affiliated academically with Saint Mary's University of Minnesota /USA and Tangaza University College, Nairobi, Kenya. The programs were developed as a response to the need for a contextualized approach to teaching cultures and religion of Africa, and training bi-cultural pastoral, educational, medical and developmental agents in Africa.

Student doing field research   Tangaza College   Fr. Michael Kirwen at graduation ceremony

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