The University of Global Health Equity (UGHE) is located in Butaro, some 95km north of the capital Kigali.
The institution sits on a 100-hectare land that was given by the Rwandan government.
While details of the cost of construction have not been disclosed, the varsity was set up with funding from Partners in Health, Cummings Foundation and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Acknowledging the importance of partnerships, President Kagame said: “We have collaboration on scientific research to measure the impact of health interventions, and continually improve the care that our citizens receive.”
UGHE offers a master’s degree in Science in Global Health Deliver as well as degrees in Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery.
“Our next generation of doctors must understand the systems that drive social determinants of health, have the skills to strategically take initiative, and find solutions to barriers to service delivery,” said Dr Agnes Binagwaho, UGHE’s Vice Chancellor.
Dr Paul Farmer, a co-founder of Partners in Health and a university professor at Harvard Medical School, said UGHE’s location in rural Rwanda was ideal because that is where doctors are most needed.
“It’s no accident that our campus is not in an urban city centre. We want our students to understand what it’s like to deliver care in rural settings, yes, but more importantly to look beyond what they can learn in the classroom and the clinic,” he said at the launch.
The university will offer scholarships for the master’s students ranging between $49,000 and $54,000.