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Computing & IS

Mak Commissions Research Private Cloud Computing Facility

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On Friday 12th February, 2021 Makerere University with support from the Government of Sweden through the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) commissioned a first-of-its-kind Research Private Cloud Computing facility. Worth UGX1.6 Billion, the facility is situated in the Directorate for ICT Support (DICTS) offices, College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT).

Presided over by the Acting (Ag.) Executive Director, Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) Eng. Irene Sewankambo, the ceremony was also graced by Senior Research Advisor, Embassy of Sweden in Uganda-Dr. Gity Behravan and the Vice Chancellor-Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe represented by the Director Quality Assurance-Dr. Vincent Ssembatya.

Present were the Director Directorate of Research and Graduate Training (DRGT)-Prof. Buyinza Mukadasi, Director DICTS-Mr. Samuel Mugabi and the day’s host, Principal College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS)-Prof. Tonny Oyana.

In his welcome remarks, Mr. Mugabi thanked Sida for being a long-term supporter of developing the ICT function and capacity at Makerere University, right from establishing the optic fibre backbone network at the Main, Mulago, MUBS and MUARIK Campuses to offering training for DICTS staff.

“We are now moving into the Web 3.0 era where the state-of-the-art Research Private Cloud Computing facility will enable us to do high performance computing, serve as a data repository for all 17 Mak-Sida projects and prepare Makerere University for the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR).”

Prof. Oyana, Principal Investigator (PI) of the Mak-Sida Project 381: Integrating ICT-based support in Research, Teaching and Innovations, expressed deep appreciation to Sida for the continued good will and support to infrastructure development at Makerere University.

“We strongly believe that now an opportunity exists for capacity building in DICTS to develop relevant IT knowledge and skills to grow cloud-based computing and storage applications to supportMakerere University’s research” remarked Prof. Oyana.

In the same breath, he recognized the presence of the Dean, School of Computing and Informatics Technology (SCIT)-Assoc. Prof. Gilbert Maiga and the Team Leader, Mak-Sida Math sub-programme-Dr. John Mango Magero and urged them to encourage recent PhD graduates to start using the facility to host their cloud-based activities.

Project Co-PI, Prof. Uno Fors in his virtual address congratulated Makerere University upon the impressive installation, noting that Stockholm University (SU) had only recently received its cloud computing facility and as such, was not far ahead of its partner. He pledged that SU would support technology-based training of trainers so as to facilitate skills transfer over the internet. “When the pandemic allows, I will come over” he added.

In his remarks, Prof. Buyinza, also Overall Coordinator of the Mak-Sida Programme sincerely thanked the Embassy in Uganda, People and Royal Government of Sweden for the enormous support to Makerere University over the years. He further expressed gratitude that this support was now being extended to research data management through the new facility.

“This is a one-of-a-kind facility to create access, storage and security for our research data and I thank the Project PI Prof. Tonny Oyana for taking the initiative and showing us that it was possible to pull off this high-stake investment” he added.

Speaking on behalf of the Vice Chancellor, Dr. Vincent Ssembatya noted that Sida’s cooperation with Makerere University goes back more than 20 years and was glad that the state-of-the-art facility was being commissioned in the period leading up to Makerere’s celebration of 100 years of existence.

He shared that the University had embarked on implementation of its new 10 year strategic plan, which seeks to consolidate Makerere’s position as the global knowledge hub at the heart of Africa, representing a major paradigm shift. “We have in the past been engaged in a number of activities and we now want to see how best to support other universities and the country through initiatives like cloud computing.”

Dr. Ssembatya sincerely thanked the Swedish Embassy and Royal Government for the generosity and support that took into consideration Makerere’s present and future ICT needs. He pledged the University’s commitment to fully utilize the facility.

In her remarks, Dr. Behravan reiterated that institution-building, postgraduate training, and the existence of an environment that is conducive for research and research training are all part of the holistic effort supported by Swedish research funding to Uganda since the year 2000.   

She expressed the Swedish Embassy’s gratitude to Makerere’s Institutional approach to addressing developments in the ICT environment, as shown by establishment of the new facility. “Today we are witnessing the fruit of a cost-sharing partnership between Sweden and Makerere whereby the University has shown a strong ownership in implementation of its ICT Policy and Master Plan and securing the sustainability of the ICT system and services in line with its strategic direction.”

The Senior Research Advisor thanked the Vice Chancellor for working with the Swedish Embassy to ensure that Makerere has a sustainable and affordable ICT environment. She equally thanked Prof. Oyana, Mr. Mugabi and their respective teams for continued engagement and believing that the project could be successfully executed. Finally, she thanked Prof. Buyinza and staff at DRGT for the support and guidance accorded to the project team.

The Guest of Honour, Eng. Sewankambo thanked the project team for inviting her to not only grace but also witness the historic moment. The Makerere University alumna of Electrical Engineering paid tribute to her alma mater for always being a model research and innovation institution. “I applaud Makerere University for being out there and recognizing that we as a nation are growing.”

She shared that Uganda was already implementing her National 4IR strategy and the NDPIII has a specific programme on digital transformation. One of the programme’s objectives is to promote ICT research, innovation and commercialisation of indigenous knowledge products.

“I am happy to note that the National Conference on Communications is going be hosted by Makerere University next month. The Conference will bring together players from Government and Academia to ensure that research developed is relevant to the country” she said.

The Ag. Executive Director UCC thanked the Swedish Embassy and Government for the specific support to ICT infrastructure development and urged all stakeholders to ensure that they harness the immense brain power to carry Uganda forward.

Article by Public Relations Office

See Downloads for the Mak Research Private Cloud Computing Brochure

Computing & IS

CoCIS CIPSD Short Courses Online September 2021 Intake

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Users in one of the Computer Labs in the College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS), Makerere University, Kampala Uganda.

The Center for Innovations and Professional Skills Development (CIPSD), College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS), Makerere University is a specialized unit which delivers state-of-art training in ICT. The training includes; Cisco Networking Academy for Cisco related courses, Microsoft IT Academy Program for Microsoft related courses, International Computer Driving License course, Oracle Certified Training center for Oracle, Linux and Unix Training center. CoCIS is also an authorized Testing center, operating under PearsonVUE and Kryterion.

Please see Downloads for the courses currently offered at the Center.

For further enquiries, contact;

The Center for Innovations and Professional Skills Development (CIPSD)
Level 5, Block B/Front Office, Block A
College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS)
Makerere University
E-mail: psd.cis[at]mak.ac.ug
Url: www.cis.mak.ac.ug/cipsd
Tel: +256 392 000 180
Mob: +256 782 512 897/+256 752 779 964/+256 775 349 730

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Computing & IS

EASLIS Sends 6 Undergrads to University of Borås

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The six scholarship students take a group photo with the Deputy Principal CoCIS-Dr. Dr. Rwashana Semwanga (5th R), Dean EASLIS-Prof. Constant Okello-Obura (6th R), Dr. Joyce Bukirwa (R), Ms. Martha Muwanguzi (3rd R), Mr. Charles Batte (2nd Row 3rd L) and the EASLIS team after being briefed on 1st September 2021, EASLIS, Makerere University.

By Charles Halonda-Funa

The East African School of Library and Information Science (EASLIS), College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS), Makerere University in collaboration with the University of Borås, Sweden officially launched the Erasmus+ ICM and Linnaeus-Palme projects. Under the project each institution will exchange and send undergraduate students, academic staff and administrative staff to their respective partner institutions. The project is slated to last three years with a total of 18 students, 9 academic staff and 3 administrative/library staff benefiting from the exchange program.

The collaboration is a partnership that was initiated in 2019 with the approval of the Vice Chancellor, Makerere University– Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe. It consists of two projects and will be funded for three years. The two projects are:

  1. Linnaeus-Palme
    • A SIDA-funded programme administered by the Swedish Council for Higher Education. The aim is to contribute to a broader resource base for international development cooperation and increased quality in higher education, through teacher and student exchange between higher education institutions in Sweden and higher education institutions in low- and middle-income countries.
    • Sustainable Internalization in Library and Information Education.
    • Financed by the Swedish Council for Higher Education.
  2. Erasmus+ International Credit Mobility
    • A programme within the Erasmus+ framework promoting the exchange of students, academics, and non-academic staff with partner countries of the ERASMUS+ program (i.e., mostly non-EU and non-EFTA countries and non-candidate countries of the EU).
    • Enhanced Sustainable and Integrated Internationalization.
    • Financed by Erasmus and the European Union.

Some of the partner countries on these projects include Albania, Brazil, Sweden, Canada, Iran, China, Rwanda and Uganda.

On 1st September 2021, the East African School of Library and Information Science officially bade farewell to the eligible six undergraduate exchange students as the first cohort on these projects. The students are:

  1. Ms. Nakibuka Esther, Bachelor of Library and Information Sciences (BLIS)
  2. Mr. Ssemogerere Abubaker, BLIS
  3. Ms. Kavuhani Immaculate, BLIS
  4. Mr. Ngowi Innocent, BLIS
  5. Mr. Kato Arnold, Bachelor of Records and Archive Management (BRAM)
  6. Ms. Nagujja Jamirah, BRAM
Prof. Constant Okello Obura (Dean, EASLIS) and Richard Batte (Project coordinator) discuss and address questions from the students
Prof. Constant Okello Obura (Dean, EASLIS) and Richard Batte (Project coordinator) discuss and address questions from the students

The students were briefed by EASLIS staff on the expectations from them and the partners and in his opening remarks Prof. Constant Okello-Obura (Dean, EASLIS) emphasized on the fact that they would be ambassadors of EASLIS, CoCIS, Makerere University, and Uganda, hence the need for students’ maturity, innovativeness and discipline that is reflective of the high standards of Makerere University. He further added that the students should continuously be in touch with their Heads of Department/Project coordinator, document their stay, and embrace the good professional operations in place at the University of Borås. This he said, would enable EASLIS to address the requirements and re-plan where necessary for the benefit of the 2nd cohort and further improve its international relations. “Take the many great things from Makerere University to Borås and come back with only good practices from Borås to Makerere University” Prof. Obura remarked.

Prof. Constant Okello-Obura addressing the EASLIS team and students.
Prof. Constant Okello-Obura addressing the EASLIS team and students.

Mr. Richard Batte (Project coordinator) briefed them on the project expectations and encouraged them to heed the advice of Prof. Okello-Obura as he wished them a safe journey.”This opportunity will be very beneficial to you. I know it’s your first time to travel out of Uganda, but it is important to be humble, embrace and learn the culture,” said Richard Batte.

Dr. Joyce Bukirwa tips the students.
Dr. Joyce Bukirwa tips the students.

Dr. Joyce Bukirwa also chipped in and encouraged them to make sure that they attend all the classes (physically and online) and take the opportunity to interact and network for the many opportunities that will be made available to them.

Representing the International Office, Makerere University was Ms. Martha Muwanguzi who congratulated the students for this impressive achievement and asked them to fully utilize this opportunity to seek knowledge and establish life long partnerships as mentees or mentors.

Assoc. Prof. Agnes Rwashana addressing the students.
Assoc. Prof. Agnes Rwashana addressing the students.

In closing Assoc. Prof. Agnes Rwashana (Deputy Principal, CoCIS) congratulated the East African School of Library and Information Sciences for winning the Erasmus grant and making the effort to collaborate with international universities. She also congratulated the students for being selected and asked them to embrace all the advice given by the Dean, Project coordinator and the rest of the team. Most importantly she advised them to take the opportunity seriously for it might never come again.

Speaking on behalf of the students Mr. Ssemogerere Abubaker (BLIS, Student team leader) thanked the EASLIS management and staff for the opportunity of a lifetime. He asked EASLIS staff for their prayers as they embark on this new journey in their lives and promised they would represent EASLIS and Makerere University in a positive light.

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Computing & IS

Amity University: Call For Applications July 2021 Intake

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Block B of the College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS), Makerere University, Kampala Uganda as seen from the Block A parking lot

In partnership with Amity University (AUUP), Makerere University under the College of Computing and Information Sciences (CoCIS) has been offering e-Learning courses (Bachelor’s degrees, Master’s, post-graduate diplomas and Post-graduate certificates) for the last over 10 years under the Pan African e-network project on behalf of the Uganda government, Indian government and African union.

Now under a new Partnership M.O.U since inception in the year 2018. We offer a variety of courses tailored for convenient and continued education to students in East Africa unable to attend university physically, using modern information communication and online technologies from AUUP and state-of-the-art e-learning technology. The degrees will be awarded to successful candidates by Amity University.

Please see Downloads for course details.

ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS:

  • Master and Postgraduate programmes – Minimum is a Bachelor’s degree in any discipline.
  • Bachelor programmes – Minimum is two (2) principal passes at ‘A’ level.

APPLICATION PROCEDURE:

  • Pick an Application Form (50,000 UGX) and banking details: ACCOUNT NUMBER: 9030014896898, ACCOUNT NAME: COLLEGE OF COMPUTING & INFORMATION PROJECTS. – STANBIC BANK. (ANY BRANCH IS OK.)
  • Submit together with photocopies of certified transcripts, certificates, two passport size photos, and a copy of your National ID and Passport (Mandatory for all applicants)

PLEASE NOTE:

  • All students are required to pay not less than 80% of the tuition fees before registration and enrollment.

Application deadline for July intake is 30th June 2021

For additional details contact:

The Front Office, School of Computing and IT, Block A
Phone: +256 788 864870 OR +256 703 147449 (WhatsApp)

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