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The Color & Dance that marked International Students’ Cultural Day

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The sounds of traditional Kenyan music playing over the loud chatter greeted you as you approached the venue. It is only when one rounded the corner that you’d indeed fully begin to conceive the source of all this animation.

The sounds of traditional Kenyan music playing over the loud chatter greeted you as you approached the venue. It is only when one rounded the corner that you’d indeed fully begin to conceive the source of all this animation.

The Livingstone hall quadrangle was lined at the upper edges with curious onlookers and at the lower terraces with an array of colors, flags, costumes, let alone the traditional artifacts and food that indeed heralded one to what was going to be a very colorful day.

The first-ever International Students’ Cultural day, held on the “superstitious” Friday the 13th November 2009 got off to a cloudy start with rain clouds looming ominously overhead and would have left the doubters teetering with anticipation of a rain soaked event, but this wasn’t to be as activities soon kicked off in earnest. First were the National Anthems from Kenya, Tanzania, Rwanda, Sudan, Congo, the host nation Uganda and finally the Makerere Anthem.

L-R Dean of Students Mr. Ekudu, Ag. V.C Prof. Baryamureeba & Kenya H.C Second Counselor Mr. John NzuveDignitaries from the representative countries then made their entrance with Mr. John U. Nzuve, Second Counselor Kenya High Commission leading the way. He was shortly followed by Ms. Anisa Mbega, Administrator Tanzania High Commission , Madame Okoto, representing her husband Ambassador Charles Okoto, Head of Mission, Congo Embassy . They were later joined by a representative from Government of South Sudan . On hand to welcome them were Prof. Venansius Baryamureeba , Ag. Vice Chancellor, Makerere University, Mr. John Ekudu, Dean of Students, Dr. Idris Rai, Dean Academic Affairs, Faculty of Computing & IT and student leaders.

Masai

 The emcees of the day then announced the first item of the afternoon, a fashion show, where students from Rwanda set the pace with their flowing attires dominated by black, white and brown colors, followed by the Masai, with their predominantly red checkered attires for the men, with the women donning a more conservative maroon or purple topped off with decorative bead headgear for the women and shiny ornaments for the men.

They were shortly followed by the Congolese, with distinct print fabric, facial masks and other traditional fabric. The coastal tribes from Kenya then took to stage, with their long print dresses, head and body wraps meant to observe their mainly Moslem dress code. An elder from the Luo tribe then made his grand entrance, complete with a walking stick and fly whisk for good measure.

KikuyuThe graceful Tanzanian tribes were unmistakable with their calm demeanor, long tunics and wraps and the occasional headgear for the women. The Kamba and Luhya tribes followed suite before the Kalenjin made their elaborate entrance, complete with bow and arrows, spears and shields, and both traditional and modern day wear. The descendants of Gikuyu then brought up the rear, with their flowing wraps for both the men and women.

With all the traditional fashion paraded for the day, it was time for a musical interlude, and the Congolese students were only too happy to extend the courtesy. To the rhythmic overtones of the electric guitar that characterize lingala music, the students effortlessly demonstrated why this music and dance continues to dominate Central Africa and spillover into East Africa.

The Dean of Students then welcomed all the dignitaries present and thanked them for honoring the invitations. He lauded the organizers of the cultural day for their innovation, which would not only give a chance to the internationals to exhibit their various cultures but also offer a platform for the host institution to L-R Mr. Ekudu & Guest of Honor Prof. Baryamureebaappreciate the diversity of cultures therein. He then welcomed the Guest of Honor to make his remarks.

Prof. Baryamureeba thanked the organizers and participants for their invitation and expressed how honored he felt to be officiating over such a colorful function. He recognized the importance of hosting such days as Makerere played and continues to play a key role as the regional hub of intellectual pursuit for East and Central Africa. Citing the Kenya’s current Head of State President Mwai Kibaki and former Tanzanian President H.E. Dr.(h.c.) Benjamin Mkapa; who was recently awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the University he reiterated Makerere’s motto and indeed vision “We build for the future”

TanzaniaThe dances then continued in earnest with the Luo of Kenya taking to the stage first. Accompanied by an overzealous trumpet blower, this dance was characterized by passionate gyration and singing. They were shortly followed by the Tanzanian community backed up by eager drummers. The initial calm demeanor during the fashion show quickly gave way to an enthusiastic ensemble commandeered by an even more enthusiastic fellow, who left the audience wowed with his agility despite his size.

Delegation at one of the stallsThe guests then moved on to view the exhibitions of traditional artifacts, brews, dishes and medicine, receiving samples from the Luo, Kikuyu, roasted meat from the Luhya, viewing coconut oil extraction tools from the Pwani Kenyan Coastal tribe, medicinal exhibits of the Kamba and a variety of food from the Bakusu of Kenya.

The delegation then moved over to the Rwandan display where they viewed traditional artifacts such as baskets, gourds and traditional methods of churning butter and ghee. Thereafter they proceeded to the Congolese exhibition, where food and wooden artifacts were on display.

Congolese Students

 

The last of exhibitions was the Tanzanian food display, where on the insistence of the exhibitors, the delegation sampled some of the culinary delights, while once again being entertained by the exuberant Congolese students.

 

Airbone! A Rwandan dancer in action A graceful entrance of Rwandan belles accompanied by rhythmic clapping, singing and drumming ushered in the Rwandan performance, complete with mock spears and shields, and elaborate headgear that accentuated the energetic stomping by the male dancers.

Quick to follow suit were the Luhya of Kenya with an elaborate dance complete with colorful costumes, which transcended into a circumcision dance and mock ritual performance. The Abagusi of Kenya then took to the stage, followed by the the loud singing but graceful dancing Kikuyu. The ritual preceded Kamba dance left the crowd chucking, followed by the humming and leaping Masai, who were eventually followed by the warlike Kalenjin dance, accompanied by the traditional arsenal.

All these colorful and energetic performances indeed paid tribute to the organizers of the inaugural International Students’ Cultural day and justified the notching of this event as a major item on the University Calendar. We can’t wait for next year.

 

Kalenjin ensemble

 

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Uganda’s policymakers implored to address forest loss, plastic & water pollution

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Left to Right: Prof. Gunnar Köhlin, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, Amb. Maria Håkansson, Commissioner Julius Mafumbo and Prof. Edward Bbaale posing for a group photo before the opening ceremony on 22nd September 2022: Photo by EfD-Mak Centre.

The Vice Chancellor Professor Barnabas Nawangwe on Thursday 22nd September, 2022 participated in the opening of the EfD Annual meeting hosted by Makerere University at Speke Resort Munyonyo where he appealed to government to implement the ban on kaveera and address other environmental issues.

The opening ceremony moderated by the EfD Global Hub Manager Gunnar Köhlin and was graced by Uganda’s Minister for Water and Environment represented by the Commissioner for Water, Mr. Julius Mafumbo and the Swedish Ambassador to Uganda, H.E. Maria Håkansson.

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Prof. Nawangwe urges Makerere University community to support the Mastercard Foundation E-learning Initiative

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By Bernard Buteera

Makerere University has launched a two million dollar E-learning Project, dubbed The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program E-learning initiative.  

The launch was held on Tuesday 20th September 2022 at Makerere University, Yusuf Lule Central Teaching Facility Auditorium. It attracted over 200 participants, who included members of University Management, College Principals, School Deans, Academic and Administrative staff, students and the general university community.

While addressing the gathering, the Chief Guest, Prof. Mary Okwakol, the Executive Director of National Council for Higher Education (NCHE), congratulated Makerere University for winning such a huge grant, which will go a long way in transforming the eLearning infrastructure at Makerere University.

“I am happy to be joining you in launching a project that is at the heart of National Council for Higher Education. Online learning is at the heart of the Council, not only because of the challenges presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, but also the world is now a digital world.” Prof. Okwakol remarked.

Prof. Okwakol thanked Mastercard Foundation and other development partners who have continued to support initiatives that help transform higher institutions of learning in Uganda.

“I sincerely thank the Mastercard Foundation and other partners who have continued to support higher education in Uganda, especially in the area of research and online learning. Globally, the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, greatly disrupted education systems forcing learners and some schools to shift to virtual learning to curb the spread of the pandemic.” Prof. Okwakol pointed out.

On his part, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe urged the university community, especially the academic staff to take advantage of the Mastercard Foundation E-learning initiative to develop e-content across all Colleges of the University, to enhance capacity for eLearning at Makerere University.

[L -R] Chairperson of the Steering Committee of the E-learning Initiative, Prof. Umar Kakumba, Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, Prof. Mary Okwakol, the Executive Director of National Council for Higher Education (NCHE), Prof. Paul Birevu Muyinda, the Coordinator of the Mastercard Foundation E-learning Initiative and Prof. Justine Namaalwa, the Program Coordinator for Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program.

”I appeal to the Colleges to embrace this project and have as many courses adopt this pedagogy development system, even though students will continue with face-to face and phyisical learning, they should be allowed the option of online learning. The platforms that are going to be built, will give our students an opportunity to interact with international students, scholars, teachers and with each other.” Prof. Nawangwe applealed.

The Vice Chancellor, further called upon all other development partners to emulate Mastercard Foundation in supporting Makerere University and other universities on the entire African continent in strengthening digital literacy, so that Africa is not left behind.

”In 2018 I attended a conference on E-learning in Beijing China, where a critical question was asked; Will Africa be left behind again? This was in reference to many advancements that were taking place in the western world, in which Africa had been left behind.” The Vice Chancellor reminded the audience.

Prof. Nawangwe further emphaised the importance of e-learning as one of the critical modes of teaching and learning in the 21st first century.   

”Ladies and Gentlemen, I cannot over emphasise the importance we attach to e-learning the 21st Century, that is why we took a decision to elevate the Department of Open and Distance Learning into an Institute of Open and Distance E-learning with an intention of having e-learning extended to other Colleges of the university.” Prof. Nawangwe pointed out.

The Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs, and Chairperson of the Steering Committee of the E-learning Initiative, Prof. Umar Kakumba, rallied the University community to support the implementation of the project in the University.

“The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program E-learning initiative could not have come in at a better time than post COVID19 era. A pandemic, which exposed our systems and methods of teaching and learning. You all recall, when were hit by the pandemic, with lockdowns and closures of institutions of learning, we all went into a panicky mode on how were going to cope with online learning. I therefore call upon every member of the university to give this project the support it deserves.

Prof. Kakumba reminded the audience the importance and relevancy of online learning at Makerere University and other universities in Uganda.

“The online method of learning is best suited for everyone. This digital revolution has led to remarkable changes in how the content is accessed, consumed, discussed, and shared. Office goers and stay home mothers can take up online educational courses too, at the time that suits them. Depending on their availability and comfort, many people choose to learn at weekends or evenings.” Prof. Kakumba remarked.

Prof. Paul Birevu Muyinda, the Coordinator of the Mastercard Foundation E-learning Initiative, informed the audience the importance of the project and the expected outcomes for the University.

One of the Champions of e-learning trained by Arizona State University, Prof. Paul Birevu Muyinda receiving a certificate from Chief Guest.

“The Mastercard Foundation e- Learning Initiative is a Project funded by Mastercard Foundation aimed at addressing the negative impact of COVID-19 pandemic that constrained access and continuity of teaching, learning, research and community engagement activities at Makerere University” Prof. Muyinda pointed out.

Prof. Muyinda further thanked the team that he worked with in putting up the proposal in a very short time that yielded such an important grant for the University.

“I thank the team that spent sleepless nights putting together the proposal that resulted into this project. I must report that Makerere University is privileged to be having the most highly qualified persons in online instruction design and online pedagogy at the IODeL and beyond. It is now up to Makerere University in particular and the Country in general to make use of these persons to transform the terrain of online, blended distance and e-learning education.” Prof. Muyinda remarked.

Prof. Justine Namaalwa, the Program Coordinator for Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at Makerere University, informed the audience, that the E-learning initiative was one of the many partnerships between Mastercard Foundation and Makerere University geared at supporting the young people to succeed on the African continent.

Members of University Management, staff and students present.

“The Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program continues to recognize that in order to enable young people across Africa to succeed, there is need to; Address systemic barriers in Higher education, Strengthen the capacity of Institutions that serve the Young People, and Support innovative solutions across critical sectors.” Prof. Namaalwa remarked.

The colourful launch ended with a panel discussion in which panelists digested the importance and opportunities for open distance and eLearning in higher institutions of learning.

Bernard Buteera is the Communications Officer of the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at Makerere University.

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Supplementary Admissions to Bachelor of Laws Under Private Sponsorship 2022/23

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Mak-Undergraduate-Admissions-2021-2022

The Academic Registrar, Makerere University, informs applicants wishing to be admitted to Bachelor of Laws Private for 2022/2023 Academic year but failed to submit their application online to submit their applications from Friday 23rd to Friday 30th September, 2022 at a non-refundable fee of 50,000/= (Fifty thousand shillings only).

The applicants MUST have passed the Pre-entry Examinations for Bachelor of Laws.

Diploma/Degree holders should submit certified copies of their academic transcript to Room
315 Level 3, Senate Building.

Applicants who have already been admitted need not apply.

For any additional information, contact Undergraduate Admissions Offices 301/303 for A’Level Applicants and Office 315 for Diploma/Degree holders.

ALFRED MASIKYE NAMOAH
AG. ACADEMIC REGISTRAR
Date: 22nd September, 2022

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