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Nyabyeya Forestry College Hands Over 10hectares to Enhance Mak’s Practical Forestry Training

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Nyabyeya Forest College (NFC) in Masindi has handed over ten (10) hectares of land to Makerere University to enhance practical forestry training. The land provided will be used for establishment of a training plantation forest which will help in enhancing practical training and research.

This follows a Memorandum of Understanding signed between the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES) and Nyabyeya Forestry College on 3rd July 2018.

The land was handed over by the Principal NFC Mr. Godfrey Akubonabona to the Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe on his maiden visit to NFC on 15th August 2018. The MoU between CAES and NFC was operationalised on the same day.

The hand over was witnessed by NFC staff including the Deputy Principal, Mr. Kisakye  Richard, the Academic Registrar Mr.  Swaib Gwanyi, the Assistant Academic Registrar Mr.  Ambrose Ahimbisibwe and the Plantation Manager, Mr. Geofrey Sebahutu among others.

Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (L) hands over an assortment of Mak Souvenirs to Principal NFC Mr. Godfrey Akubonabona (R) during the visit

The Vice Chancellor  was accompanied by the Director Legal Affairs Mr. Henry Mwebe, the Principal CAES Prof. Bernard Bashaasha, his deputy Dr. Gorettie Nabanoga, the Dean School of Forestry, Environmental and Geographical Sciences Prof. Mnason Tweheyo, Deans  and  Heads of units from CAES.

Prof. Nawangwe described Nyabyeya Forestry College as a centre of excellence in training foresters and appreciated the college for the excellent work it has been doing to train Makerere University students.

“I must commend those who have been resilient to keep this place in difficult times. I also commend the Principal Nyabyeya Forest College for the transformations during his two years in office,” Nawangwe commended.

The Vice Chancellor noted that Mak and NFC provide the biggest opportunity in the country as the only university and college training foresters.

The Professor decried the declining forest cover in the country  noting that unlike the past where permission would be sought  to even cut a tree one owned in his or her land, today cutting of trees is not regulated leading to the disappearance forestry cover.

Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (C) plants a tree in part of the 10hectares allocated by NFC to Mak

Citing  Kenya  as an example of an organized country where cutting  a tree for  charcoal is not allowed, Nawangwe  implored educational  institutions including Mak and NFC to take on the responsibility to ensure these standards come back.

“Government expects a lot from us the educational institutions. The most absurd thing is that someone from government should advise  Makerere what to do. We can do a lot of research and that is extremely important.

The reason forests are disappearing is that we are producing very fast. Uganda is still among the fastest growing populations in Africa and therefore we must research into alternative ways of keeping our forests,” Nawangwe said.

The Vice Chancellor emphasized the importance of more practical training and learner-centered approach in promoting entrepreneurship and churning out graduates that can compete on the world market.

He observed that with two forests at their disposal, the two institutions can work together not only to do research and promote practical training but also generate resources to supplement government efforts.

The Vice Chancellor and Members of Management inspect the NFC sawmill during a tour of the Forestry College, Masindi, Uganda

“NFC has the land and expertise. Makerere has expertise. We should identify what we can do jointly so that we are able to relieve government from the burden of paying staff salaries.

There is a shortage of avocados on the world market. Israel with its problems is the biggest exporter of avocados to Europe but they can only supply one season. This is one thing we can look at, say if we plant 100 acres, we would be the biggest suppliers in East Africa”. Nawangwe advised.

The Professor thanked NFC for the support given to Makerere over the past 40 years and advised the two institutions to take advantage of the capacity built to offer sabbaticals and staff exchanges so that the relationship is mutually beneficial.

Nawangwe further implored the two institutions to take on responsibility of advising Government on matters of policy. He noted that since the 1998 Act, everyone in the country  can do whatever they want irrespective of the repercussions.

“The Great lakes region is the worst affected. The Water war will begin from here, there is high population, climate change, all forms of degradation and we are heading for disaster.

We are the people who have the knowledge to avert these problems. You need to do research in these areas and give proper policy guidance to our government,” Nawangwe said.

L-R: Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, Mr. Godfrey Akubonabona, Prof. Bernard Bashaasha, Dr. Gorettie Nabanoga and an NFC Official during a visit to the College

The Principal CAES, Prof. Bernard Bashaasha said NFC and CAES have been enjoying an informal relationship for over 35years.  Bashaasha expressed happiness that they were at Nyabyeya to consummate the marriage.

“The collaboration has been going on not properly anchored and I am happy that this is happening .

The MoU has three critical elements; facilities, recess term and staff exchange but we are here to add another aspect of the relationship of having land,” Bashaasha reported.

Prof. Bashaasha was optimistic that with the acquisition and improvement of the existing facilities at NFC, forestry students would be able to spend more time on practical training.

“If we utilise the 10hectares of land well, we can train environmentalists and conservation managers and also make money. Environmental issues are important, climate change is here with us, when you see global patterns, that makes training in environmental conservation very important,” the CAES Principal stated.

Prof. Barnabas nawangwe (2nd R) is taken on a tour of one of the Hostel facilities

The Dean School of Forestry, Environmental and Geographical Sciences Prof. Mnason Tweheyo explained that as the most needy and user unit they labored to undertake  the curriculum review to remove  redundancies and duplications and ultimately found that Nyabyeya Forest College was the most practical area for training foresters.

Prof. Tweheyo said, since 1973 NFC has been training Makerere students undertaking forestry and related programs every year during recess term including use of the college facilities, staff exchange and collaborative research.

Tweheyo said at one time both institutions benefited from NORAD support. From 1973 to 1975, NORAD supported NFC and Makerere University to establish the Faculty of Forestry and Nature Conservation.

“Before, we used to time when NFC students were out and would bring Makerere students here. This year 2018, more than 400 students from 1st to 4th year have passed through NFC.

NFC offered space where Makerere can build a hostel to accommodate 45 students. In addition there is land  identified next to the hostel allocated to Makerere that can be used to expand accommodation for staff and students.” The Dean said.

The Principal NFC Mr. Godfrey Akubonabona (Fore) leads Members of Management on a tour of one of the facilities at the College

Prof. Tweheyo explained that for a long time stakeholders have been complaining about forestry graduates being more theoretical than practical. He said with the acquisition of the 10 hectares of land from NFC, the university will be in position to offer the best training in Africa.

“NFC sits on a Forest reserve. Those who work in forest reserves do not get titles but certificates. So NFC gave us user rights for training students.

We thought this would be very important and we shall be able to collect data from day one when the trees are planted, conduct research as well as training,” he said.

Prof. Tweheyo said the school will not plant indigenous trees but look at different species for recommendation to the industry.

“We shall use it for demonstration whereby students visit once a month, and rely on student labour as this is important for them to gain practical skills. Mak and NFC will do research together,” the don added.

Prof. Mnason Tweheyo (L) addresses the audience at NFC during the MoU signing ceremony

“For the first 2 years, one hectare can consume 3million shillings. The next 2-6 years a hectare  will consume 2million. 6-12 years, a hectare requires 2million and from 12-18 years a hectare will consume 1 million shillings” the Dean said.

Prof. Tweheyo pledged that school had earmarked 4million Uganda Shillings to kickstart the process and called upon the college and the university to lend a helping hand to make the project a success. The Dean also underscored the role played by Budongo Conservation Forest (BCF)  in accommodating and training Makerere University staff and students although this association was yet to be formalised.

He said BCF by virtue of its being a tropical forest has attracted  researchers from across the globe. He was optimistic that the BCF would become the Biological field station for Makerere since many of her units including CAES, the College of Veterinary Medicine, Animal Resources and Biosecurity (CoVAB) and the College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS) stand to benefit.

Members of Management tour the NFC Library facility

The Deputy Principal Dr. Gorettie Nabanoga thanked the Dean for articulating the issues affecting Forestry training. She observed that the field of forestry training has taken a turnaround, requiring modern and state-of-the-art equipment as opposed to the obsolete machines.

She also echoed the need to promote retooling of teaching staff in forestry so that what is given to students meets the current employers and stakeholders expectations.

Nabanoga proposed the need for Makerere and NFC to look at both long and quick maturing tree species so as to project the resources to be generated for the university and college. She also encouraged the two institutions to be gender sensitive during the enrolment of students and recruitment of staff in forestry.
The Deputy Principal thanked the Vice Chancellor for honouring the invitation to grace the occasion.

“We have never had the Vice Chancellor visiting this college. Pulling you out of the university Main Building to the forest is a signal that forestry training and natural resource management is dear to your heart,” Nabanoga said.

Dr. Fred Babweteera (standing) addresses Members of Management and NFC officials during their visit to the Budongo Conservation Field Station on 15th August 2018

The day’s major events included, meeting between Mak and NFC staff punctuated by brief remarks, launching the implementation of the Mak- CAES & NFC MoU, exchange of appreciation gifts, touring NFC facilities, tree planting at the allocated site to signify the handover of the land and finally the visit to Budongo Conservation Field Station.

Report Compiled by
Jane Anyango,
Principal Communication Officer, CAES

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Short Course Announcement: Fundamentals of Teaching and Learning

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The Lead Facilitator, Dr. Roy William Mayega (Left) takes participants through Instructional Design (ID) Training held from 29th January to 2nd February 2018. RAN Innovation Lab, ResilientAfrica Network (RAN), School of Public Health Annex, College of Health Sciences (CHS), Plot 28, House 30, Upper Kololo Terrace, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.

Many faculty members in Higher Education Institutions do not get pre-service training in teaching and learning before they start teaching. This means that they have to learn the ‘hard way’ on the job, and this often affects the quality of delivery. The Office of the Dean, Makerere University School of Public Health (MakSPH), in collaboration with the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, MakSPH, ResilientAfrica Network (RAN) and Institute of Open Distance and eLearning – Makerere University hereby announce the 2024 edition of the course titled: Fundamentals of Teaching and Learning. The course will run from Monday 29th July to Friday 2nd August 2024, only in the morning hours (08.00am – 11.30 am). The course will be delivered in dual mode: Both online (through the zoom platform) and face-to-face (at the RAN Lower Lab, MakSPH Annex in Kololo). The course is open to both junior and senior faculty members, research fellows, honorary lecturers and academic program administrators from Makerere University and other Universities wishing to enhance their teaching skills, with a view to improving teaching and learning.

Applying

Interested applicants are requested to send a short expression of interest that includes their designation, by email, to: Mr. Ivan Mutyaba, Administrator, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, using the following email address: imutyaba@musph.ac.ug. Admission will be on a first-come-first-served basis. Applicants should be ready to take off 5 mornings of intense work during the week indicated. Come and discover the frontiers of teaching and learning.

The Course Team

Course Lead: Dr. Roy William Mayega (MBChB, MPH, PhD), Senior Lecturer, Instructional Materials Designer/Editor, MPH DE Program, MakSPH; Lead the co-creation of instructional materials for the inaugural MPH DE Program

Course Facilitators

  1. Dr. Roy Gonzaga Mubuuke (PhD), Breast Radiology Specialist/Medical Education Consultant/Member HEPI Project Team
  2. Dr. Rovincer Najjuma (PhD), Senior Lecturer/Curriculum Specialist, College of Education and External Studies, Makerere University
  3. Dr. Suzanne Kiwanuka (PhD), Senior Lecturer/Chair Department of Health Policy, Planning & Management, MakSPH, College of Health Sciences, Makerere University
  4. Dr. Barbara Kirunda (PhD), Lecturer, Department of Epidemiology & Biostatistics, MakSPH, MakCHS, Field Coordinator, MPHDE Program
  5. Mr. Jude Oboth, IT Specialist, MakSPH; 12 years of professional experience managing large organizational computer networks
  6. Prof. Pauline Byakika (PhD), Professor of Medicine, Chair Department of Internal Medicine, MakSoM, MakCHS, Head, Mentorship Program MakCHS
  7. Dr. John Bosco Isunju (PhD), Lecturer, Department of Disease Control and Environmental Health, MakSPH, MakCHS; Head, COVID Task force on alternative assessment, MakSPH

Support Team

  • Ivan Mutyaba, Administrator, Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics – Admin Support
  • Harriet Adong, Communications Specialist, ResilientAfrica Network and MakRIF – Course Communications lead
  • Wilson Abigaba, IT Specialist RAN and MakRIF – Course IT Support
  • Debbie Namirembe, Senior Administrator, RAN – Admin Support

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Mary Stuart Hall Rehabilitation Commences as VC Hands over Site to NEC

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The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (Centre) hands over a file to NEC Managing Director and CEO, Lieutenant General James Mugira (Left) as Ag. DVCFA, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe (Right) witnesses on 31st May 2024. Site Handover for the proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall, Mary Stuart Road, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.

The proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall commenced on Friday 31st May 2024 with the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe handing over the site to the contractor National Enterprise Corporation (NEC) represented by Managing Director and CEO, Lieutenant General James Mugira. The first and largest female Hall of residence, Mary Stuart was completed in 1953 and named after wife to Bishop Simon Cyril Edgar Stuart, the Third Bishop of the Diocese of Uganda from 1932-1952. Mary Stuart worked hard for the betterment of women education during her time in Uganda.

Mary Stuart becomes the second student residence to undergo rehabilitation following the handover of Lumumba Hall to NEC on 27th June 2023. Both projects are fully funded by the Government of Uganda. And whereas Lumumba’s works cost UGX9billion, Mary Stuart’s will cost UGX10.5billion, and cover roof repairs, plumbing and electrical systems and installations overhaul, as well as external aesthetic works.

In his remarks, the Vice Chancellor thanked the President, H.E. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and Government of Uganda for ensuring that funds for the long-awaited rehabilitation of student halls of residence are availed. In the same breath, he thanked the First Lady and Minister of Education and Sports Hon. Janet Museveni for not only inspecting the state of the halls on 19th January 2021 but also ensuring that funding for the halls rehabilitation project is prioritized.

Prof. Nawangwe commended NEC on being a professional contractor, noting that all matters arising out of previous projects had been handled within original budgets and time-frames.

Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (2nd Right) receive a guided tour of the Mary Stuart Hall site from Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli (Right), Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera (2nd Left) and other officials. Site Handover for the proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall, Mary Stuart Road, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (2nd Right) receive a guided tour of the Mary Stuart Hall site from Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli (Right), Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera (2nd Left) and other officials.

“Now that we are in a girls’ hall, every detail matters. We must make this hall look like one that is going to house the future mothers and leaders of this nation so that when they leave, they feel that they have attended a leading university in the world” the Vice Chancellor advised NEC.

Prof. Nawangwe equally urged the Project Consultants led by Dr. Kenneth Ssemwogere, Senior Lecturer, Department of Architecture and Physical Planning, College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT) to work with the contractor on ensuring that the project works and aesthetics give the hall a fresh new look.

On behalf of NEC, Lt. Gen. James Mugira thanked the Vice Chancellor and leadership of Makerere University for the trust and confidence shown in the Corporation’s capabilities, adding that he was happy as an alumnus of the School of Law to be back to contribute the development of his Alma mater. “This is the third project we are undertaking as the National Enterprise Corporation; we started with the perimeter wall, and we are now at Lumumba Hall where works are at 80-85% completion.”

Lt. Gen. Mugira therefore reassured the Management that NEC would do quality work and try as much as possible to complete the project in time, at a relatively lower cost than other contractors. “With NEC, we bring on board military discipline and we don’t have red tape or bureaucracies; once a decision has been taken, it has been taken” he clarified.

“I want to thank the Vice Chancellor for believing in and promoting local content, because NEC is a local company. With NEC engaging in such a project, we are first of all giving jobs to our young people, we are skilling them, we are saving foreign exchange that would otherwise be repatriated and as a country, we are building capacity” Lt. Gen. Mugira summed up.

Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (3rd Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (4th Left) pose for a group photo with Left to Right: Ms. Ritah Namisango, Eng. Brian Buhanda, Mr. Yusuf Kiranda, Ms. Mary Gloria Nakajubi, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe, Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera, Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli, Mr. Rodney Rugyema and Ms. Norah Nalubowa. Site Handover for the proposed rehabilitation of Mary Stuart Hall, Mary Stuart Road, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe (3rd Left) and Lt. Gen. James Mugira (4th Left) pose for a group photo with Left to Right: Ms. Ritah Namisango, Eng. Brian Buhanda, Mr. Yusuf Kiranda, Ms. Mary Gloria Nakajubi, Prof. Henry Alinaitwe, Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera, Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli, Mr. Rodney Rugyema and Ms. Norah Nalubowa.

The Acting Deputy Vice Chancellor (Finance and Administration), Prof. Henry Alinaitwe expressed happiness that the second phase of rehabilitation of halls of residence was finally taking off under the NEC, a contractor that had done quality work on other projects such as the new Kiira Motors Corporation (KMC) plant in Jinja.

He noted that the project will provide good grounds for hands-on industrial training for students of quantity surveying, architecture, civil engineering, and other disciplines. Prof. Alinaitwe further observed that the project accords staff the opportunity to not only improve their professional profiles but also practice as consultants within the university premises, “and so we thank the Vice Chancellor for availing us these opportunities.”

The University Secretary and former Guild President, Mr. Yusuf Kiranda shared that the University Leadership looks forward to the rehabilitation works being expedited. “The current student leaders have challenged us that they would like to be around for the commissioning of the finished product and so I hope that we can finish these works and give them an opportunity to account to their electorate.

Prior to the handover ceremony, the parties were taken on a guided tour of the site by the Director, Estates and Works Department, Eng. Okuk Geoffrey Bright Owera, Dean of Students, Mrs. Winifred Kabumbuli, Warden Mary Stuart Hall, Ms. Norah Nalubowa and a host of other officials accompanied by the Chairlady Mary Stuart Hall, Ms. Mary Gloria Nakajubi.

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Business & Management

Prof. Hisali, Prof. Yawe handover office to Prof. Bbaale, Prof. Wokadala

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In a vibrant ceremony brimming with nostalgia and optimism, College of Business and Management Sciences-Makerere University (CoBAMS) celebrated the transition of leadership from the accomplished hands of Prof. Eria Hisali and Prof. Bruno L. Yawe to the promising stewardship of Prof. Edward Bbaale and Prof. James Wokadala on Friday 31st May 2024.

The event, attended by esteemed members of the university community, including representatives from the Vice Chancellor’s office and members of the Central Management Team, was a testament to the collaborative spirit and dedication that have come to define CoBAMS. The outgoing Principal, Prof. Eria Hisali, and Deputy Principal, Prof. Bruno Yawe, were lauded for their eight years of service, during which they significantly advanced the college’s academic and infrastructural capabilities.

A Legacy of Excellence

Prof. Hisali’s farewell address highlighted the numerous achievements under his leadership. He proudly noted the establishment of strategic partnerships and collaborations that have greatly benefited the college. “Our MoU with Stellenbosch University provided full PhD scholarships for four Academic Staff Members, while our partnership with Wageningen University in the Netherlands supported PhD training for two Staff Members. Additionally, the Republic of Korea’s embassy in Uganda granted three PhD scholarships,” he remarked.

Assoc Prof. Bruno Yawe (Left) handing over to incoming Deputy Principal Dr. James Wokadala.

These collaborations extended to notable institutions such as ACCA, Prudential Uganda, Addis Ababa University, The University of Rwanda, Universidade Eduardo Mondlane, and the University of Dar es Salaam, reflecting CoBAMS’ commitment to internationalization and academic excellence. Prof. Hisali also mentioned the development of a Quality Assurance Framework and significant infrastructural proposals, including a new block pending government funding.

The outgoing Principal shared impressive statistics: a fivefold increase in publications from 30 in 2017 to 150 in 2023, expansion of wireless internet coverage to over 90% of the college, and a significant rise in PhD holders among the academic staff to 60%.

Prof. Yawe appreciated all the academic, administrative and support staff that supported his leadership throughout the 8 years of service.

Looking Ahead

Prof. Edward Bbaale, the incoming Principal, expressed his vision to elevate CoBAMS as a global leader in innovative teaching, research, and policy engagement. With over two decades at CoBAMS, including eight years as Dean of the School of Economics, he emphasized his commitment to continuing the progress made by his predecessors. He pledged to prioritize graduate training, faculty research, and the commercialization of innovations, alongside strategic financial initiatives such as the College Endowment Fund.

Prof. Eria Hisali receiving a token of appreciation from memebers of the Administrative Staff at MakCoBAMS.

Prof. James Wokadala, the new Deputy Principal, acknowledged the substantial achievements of the outgoing leaders and outlined his plans to build on their legacy. He aims to foster a supportive and engaging environment by establishing a gym for staff and creating a Savings and Credit Cooperative Organization (SACCO).

Heartfelt Farewells and New Beginnings

The ceremony featured heartfelt speeches from various stakeholders, celebrating the contributions of Prof. Hisali and Prof. Yawe. Dr. Susan Namirembe Kavuma, representing the academic staff, praised the outgoing leaders for their unwavering support and urged the new administration to continue fostering a conducive environment for teaching and learning. Ms. Caroline Nanono Jjingo, on behalf of the administrative staff, echoed these sentiments, appreciating the open and inspirational leadership style of Prof. Hisali and Prof. Yawe. “Throughout their tenure, they have resonated the words of Henry Ross Perot, who said that “Lead and inspire people. Don’t try to manage and manipulate people. Inventories can be managed but people must be led.”  She said.

Outgoing Principal Eria Hisali and outgoing Deputy Principal Bruno Yawe cut cake.

The Deputy University Secretary, Mr. Simon Kizito, provided sage advice to the incoming leaders, emphasizing the importance of openness to feedback, leading by example, and maintaining accountability. He reminded them that failure is an inevitable part of leadership and encouraged them to learn from it while prioritizing self-care.

On their part, the support staff appreciated the outgoing leadership for their open door policy and willingness to support all staff especially those experiencing life challenges. Quoting Ecclesiastes 3:1, Mr Joseph Ikarokot said there was a season for everything and staff were privileged to have worked with the duo.

A Promising Future

As the new leadership team embarks on their journey, they carry forward a legacy of excellence and a vision for a brighter future. With their extensive experience and commitment to innovation and collaboration, Prof. Bbaale and Prof. Wokadala are well-positioned to steer CoBAMS toward greater achievements and global recognition.

The ceremony concluded with a celebratory cake-cutting, gifts from the administrative staff, and a reaffirmation of the college’s enduring spirit of unity and progress. The new era at CoBAMS promises continued growth and success, building on the solid foundation laid by Prof. Hisali and Prof. Yawe.

Some of the staff memebers who were present at the handover ceremony.

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