A SCOTTISH university has entered into a unique partnership to provide additional training to ministers in one of the world’s poorest countries.

Aberdeen University has teamed up with Zomba Theological College in Malawi to ensure students no longer have to come to the UK to study Masters degrees.

It is the first UK institution to take a theological postgraduate programme and teach it to church leaders in Malawi.

The initiative is supported by the Church of Scotland in partnership with the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian.

A total of 14 students have been accepted to the two-year, part-time MTh in Ministry Studies, which starts in September.

The university has cut fees by 85 per cent and students can apply for funding from a £20,000 scholarship programme set up by the World Mission Council of the Church of Scotland.

Aberdeen Presbytery is supporting the initiative, which will initially run for five years, by paying for text books.

The Rev George Cowie of South Holburn Parish Church in Aberdeen, which is twinned with the congregation of Kachere CCAP in Blantyre, said: “The developing relationship between the college and university is to be celebrated.

“By sharing our heritage of education we deepen the longstanding relationship between our two countries.”