The link between Georgia State University and Cairo University took a strong step forward June 27.

A $300,000 grant, jointly provided by U.S. Agency for International Development and Higher Education for Development, will enable Georgia State’s Robinson College of Business to expand its partner business degree program in Cairo.

Robinson College provides Cairo University with syllabi and faculty training seminars—Atlanta hosted one as recently as in May—and sends professors to Egypt to teach classes and work directly with Cairo University students.

The additional outlay brings to $700,000 the total contribution from USAID and Higher Education for Development.

The federal dollars will “help train a new generation of managers,” consistent with the U.S. goal of bolstering the market economy in Egypt, said Bijan Fazlollahi, director of Robinson’s Center for Business in Transitional Economies.

The additional funds come at a key moment for the program in Cairo, introduced four years ago. The Egyptian uprising in recent months, which saw the overthrow of former President Hosni Mubarak, prevented Robinson professors from traveling to Cairo, forcing a reliance on video-distance learning. The events also uprooted the leadership at Cairo University.

The grant will allow the project to survive until at least July 2012, when the first enrolled class will graduate with a four-year business degree.

Dr. Fazlollahi said he will apply for additional funding in the future to keep the program alive but hopes it will eventually become self-sustaining.

As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...