The World Library Day Celebrations held on Friday, 13th July 2018 in the University Library concluded on a high as the Minister of ICT and National Guidance-Hon. Frank Tumwebaze and Executive Director, National Planning Authority (NPA)-Dr. Joseph Muvawala both graciously accepted the request to champion efforts to raise funds to support procurement of e-resources and related library activities at Makerere University. The request had earlier been presented by the University Librarian-Dr. Hellen Byamugisha and reiterated by the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe.
“I wish to thank you for the invitation to champion this fundraising initiative and to this I say, let us establish a partnership with the Ministry of ICT immediately. We are supporting AIMS (Academic Information Management System) so under the same framework we can support the TISC (Technology and Innovation Support Centre). I request the Vice Chancellor to get in touch with my Permanent Secretary so that we can work this out” remarked Hon. Tumwebaze in response.
Earlier, Hon. Tumwebaze had launched the TISC, housed on the Main University Library’s Second Floor. TISC is an initiative of the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO); the Uganda Registration Services Bureau (URSB) being the National focal point, tasked with identifying potential host institutions. The TISC will the promote the quality of research and innovation of staff and students at Makerere University by providing access to patent information, scientific journals and training on Intellectual Property (IP) laws and patents.
“I thank you for moving the University Library from its orthodox state and making it relevant in the digital space. Digitization will enable you to store information for posterity. The only competition Makerere University has in this country is its own record. For you to compete with this record you must be innovative, and the TISC is one such innovation by Makerere. I therefore urge you all to accept this new idea and support it” said Hon. Tumwebaze.
The Minister further commended Prof. Nawangwe for championing the use of ICT and promoting Makerere University’s brand by being active on the social media platform Twitter. “Content is what rules the digital space as well as the virtual space. If you have no content, people will not follow you. The great Makerere should always remain great. I therefore urge you to continue publishing quality content so that we can defeat instances of fake news and alternative facts” he added.
Delivering the keynote address at the celebrations Dr. Muvawala started off by commending his alma mater Makerere University for moving library services in the right direction through digitization and embracing E-resources. He noted that the maximization of the power of information results into effective service delivery. “Information is not just a necessity but also a serious condition for efficiently running public policy and life” he explained.
He nevertheless urged the University Library to align its services to the planning perspective by embracing a global mindset that reduces the distance between its resources and users by delivering services in real-time. He further challenged the University Library actors not to sit back and be content with their achievements but rather actively participate in public dialogues that shape the policies that affect them.
“I thank you for inviting me to deliver the keynote. Now that I am informed about your activities, I can say that you are selecting the right champion. A vision isn’t a vision if it is not shared. The Uganda 2040 envisions a knowledge-based society where our planning and growth is based on knowledge and research. Our vision underpins the need for accurate, reliable information and the Makerere University Library as the National repository ought to play a visible role.
“As we celebrate this world library day and the advantages of remodeled libraries in informed societies, the role played by the oldest library in Uganda is unequalled. This is what makes Makerere truly Makerere. The only way to compete with Makerere is by doing what you do better, and as a Convocation we have to promote this university every day of our lives” enthused Dr. Muvawala.
In his remarks, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe thanked Hon. Tumwebaze and Dr. Muvawala for honouring invitations to their alma mater. He reiterated the key support role played by the University Library; being at the heart of all teaching, learning, research and innovation services at Makerere University.
“I had never fully comprehended the importance of the Makerere University Library until I heard from a Professor while I was visiting the University of Michigan in May this year that we had the best library in Africa! He however warned that all the precious collections we had risked being lost due to the wear and tear unless we digitized them” remarked Prof. Nawangwe.
He therefore commended the University Library for digitizing the institutional archives and requested the Guest of Honour and Keynote Speaker to continue marketing the University Library. “Makerere is not just a National repository but the best information asset in Africa. I therefore thank the Honourable Minister for launching the Technology and Innovation Support Centre” added Prof. Nawangwe, noting that this would go a long way addressing Africa’s lagging number of patents filed.
Addressing her guests, the University Librarian-Dr. Helen Byamugisha shared that the day’s theme “Remodeled Library Services: Informed Societies” was in line with the governing body of libraries – International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA)’s annual theme “Transform Libraries, Transform Societies: Reaching out to the hard to reach."
She added that the Library day was an opportunity to celebrate achievements and experiences by showcasing various sections of the Library through exhibitions to the library users, the general public and policy makers. The Librarian acknowledged that the library had evolved from the initial 1949 40-seater facility to today’s 3,800-seater with a host of digital and specialized amenities.
“Digital technology has revolutionised how our users seek and access information. Makerere no longer restricts itself to print publications. We now have a hybrid of both print and digital technology. Every member of staff has a personal computer and on the ground floor we have a computer for people with special needs to access library services, and a facility for nursing mothers on the fourth floor” remarked the University Librarian.
She paid tribute to her predecessors such as Prof. Maria Musoke and the late Mr. James Mugasha for the firm foundation laid and reported that as a result, the Library Staff establishment now includes three Associate Professors and several PhD holders with a few more in the pipeline. She nevertheless pointed out the heavy dependence on donor funds from development partners such as Sida, the Carnegie Corporation and others to fund procurement of e-resources, subscriptions and procurement of ICTs as a major challenge.
“I therefore call upon Hon. Tumwebaze and Dr. Muvawala to be our champions in this cause of raising funds to support library services. I also request you to include Libraries such as Makerere’s in the National Development Plan” concluded Dr. Byamugisha.
The day’s proceedings were ably moderated by Assoc. Prof. Sylvia Nannyonga Tamusuza who spoke glowingly of the warm relationship between the Main Libarary and the Department of Performing Arts and Film (PAF). “We thank the University Library for hosting the Digital Music Archive, which has the earliest recording of Ugandan music from 1901. The Archive relies on repatriation services from the British Music Archive, Australian Music Archive, the United States and I am happy to say that a number of Ugandan artistes are also depositing their works” she remarked.
The World Library Day 2018 celebrations organising committee was led by the Head Africana Section, Ms. Rhoda Nalubega, who pointed out the key role played by Librarians in the information cycle. “The most important part of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) is Information. We therefore warmly welcome the Guest of Honour and Minister of ICT and National Guidance to this celebration, where you will address the people who bear the largest responsibility in the information cycle” she remarked.
Article by Public Relations Office
Uganda’s policymakers implored to address forest loss, plastic & water pollution
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.
Prof. Nawangwe urges Makerere University community to support the Mastercard Foundation E-learning Initiative
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.
”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.
“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.
“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.
Supplementary Admissions to Bachelor of Laws Under Private Sponsorship 2022/23
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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