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1,819 CoBAMS Students awarded at 73rd Graduation Ceremony

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It was merrymaking at the Freedom Square as 1,819 students of the College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS) received PhDs, masters and undergraduate degrees on the third day of the 73rd Graduation on February 15, 2023. Of these, 891 are male while 928 are female. The college graduated 3 PhDs, 376 Masters, 11 post graduate diplomas and 1,429 undergraduate students.

During the celebrations, one of our partners, Prudential Uganda, rewarded the best 5 performing students from the Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science with USD500 and a professional study scholarship. The students recognized and their respective CGPAs include; Nanfuka Rebecca Rosette with 4.55, Mukiibi Cyrus with 4.15, Angura Kupa Abraham with 4.02, Mwesigwa Mark Lewis with 4.00 and Akumu Gloria Agnes with 3.99.

The Chancellor Prof. Ezra Suruma (2nd L) witnesses as a Prudential Uganda representative presents a USD 500 dummy cheque to Nanfuka Rebecca Rosette (2nd R) who scored a CGPA of 4.55 in the Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science. This was on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony of Makerere University held on 15th February 2023.
The Chancellor Prof. Ezra Suruma (2nd L) witnesses as a Prudential Uganda representative presents a USD 500 dummy cheque to Nanfuka Rebecca Rosette (2nd R) who scored a CGPA of 4.55 in the Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science. This was on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony of Makerere University held on 15th February 2023.

One students of the college under the MasterCard Foundations scholarship received an award for exceptional performance. Nanyunja Fatumah got a first class degree in the Bachelor of Business Administration and was awarded a plaque in recognition of her excellent performance. Other high performing students rewarded by the Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) were Nassali Tendo with a CGPA of 4.7 in the Bachelor of Science in Business Statistics, Ariong Emmanuel with a CGPA of 4.62 in Bachelor of Statistics and Okiria Eric Junior who scored a CGPA of 4.62 in the Bachelor of Science in Quantitative Economics. 

The Economic Policy Research Centre (EPRC) also rewarded the best Masters of Economics student Namuleme Hilda with a CGPA of 4.91. Namuleme is set to receive a yearlong young professionals program opportunity tenured at EPRC.

Top 5 Actuarial Science students; Mukiibi Cyrus (2nd L), Mwesigwa Mark Lewis (3rd L), Nanfuka Rebecca Rosette (4th R), Akumu Gloria Agnes (3rd R) and Angura Kupa Abraham (2nd R) with the team from  Prudential Uganda.
Top 5 Actuarial Science students; Mukiibi Cyrus (2nd L), Mwesigwa Mark Lewis (3rd L), Nanfuka Rebecca Rosette (4th R), Akumu Gloria Agnes (3rd R) and Angura Kupa Abraham (2nd R) with the team from Prudential Uganda.

A total of 13,221 graduands will receive degrees and diplomas of Makerere University during the course of the 73rd graduation ceremony. Of these, a total of 102 graduands will graduate with PhDs, 1,378 with Masters, 11,598 with Bachelor’s degrees and 143 with undergraduate and post graduate diplomas. 52 per cent of the graduands are female while 48 % are male. 41 of the 102 PhD graduands and 563 of the 1,378 Masters graduands are female, representing 40% and 41% respectively.

The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, congratulated the students, parents and staff of the college. “I also congratulate the members of staff that are graduating today as well as children and spouses of members of staff and their parents or spouses,” the Vice Chancellor said.

The Chancellor, Prof. Ezra Suruma (C) witnesses as the Executive Director EPRC, Dr. Sarah Ssewanyana (L) congratualtes the best Masters of Economics student Namuleme Hilda (R) who scored a CGPA of 4.91.
The Chancellor, Prof. Ezra Suruma (C) witnesses as the Executive Director EPRC, Dr. Sarah Ssewanyana (L) congratualtes the best Masters of Economics student Namuleme Hilda (R) who scored a CGPA of 4.91.

Prof. Nawangwe congratulated the Chairperson of Council, Mrs. Lorna Magara and the Vice Chairperson of Council, Rt. Hon. Daniel Fred Kidega upon their re-appointment.

The Vice Chancellor congratulated CoBAMS staff upon the research being carried out in the college, saying Makerere strives to transform into a research-led University. “The Research and Innovations Fund, that was made possible through a Government grant of UGX 30 billion annually, has transformed Makerere tremendously, with very many innovations in agriculture and food security, health, engineering, education, veterinary medicine, artificial intelligence, economics and business management, and the social sciences that are already changing the lives of our people,” he said.

The Principal CoBAMS, Prof. Eria Hisali listens to proceedings on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony.
The Principal CoBAMS, Prof. Eria Hisali listens to proceedings on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony.

The Vice Chancellor informed the graduands that the university has developed measures to fast track the issuance of transcripts and certificates. Previously, for one to receive the academic documents, he or she was required to clear with more than 10 offices. “We have reviewed this and one is now required to clear with only two (2) offices,” the VC said.  Prof. Nawangwe pledged that going ahead, the university would issue transcripts after one month. The VC called on the students to be good ambassadors, to trust in God and to remember that the gates of Makerere will always be open for those that seek more knowledge.

The Chancellor, Prof. Ezra Suruma, who presided over the ceremony congratulated the graduands and commended the PhD research undertaken by the awardees. He particularly commended the research on how we can improve educational attainment in UPE and USE where learning outcomes have continued to be below standard. The study also recommended improving internal financial controls in schools.

Some of the PhD Graduands on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony.
Some of the PhD Graduands on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony.

“Two other studies in the College of Business and Management Sciences attracted my attention; one was on the demand for healthcare and health insurance in Uganda and the other was about the impact of technical vocational training on employment. There is no doubt that both healthcare health insurance and employment are leading national concerns. I am therefore very pleased to see research coming from Makerere tackling issues that are at the heart of our country’s social and economic welfare,” Prof. Suruma said.  

He commended the spirit of hard work, endurance, self-control and discipline among the students, adding that the degrees being awarded are testimony to the hardships, the discipline, the commitment, the pain and the tears the students have shed over decades of academic struggle.

The Chancellor Prof. Ezra Suruma (C) witnesses as a Prudential Uganda representative presents a USD 500 dummy cheque to Mwesigwa Mark Lewis (R) who scored a CGPA of 4.00 in the Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science. This was on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony of Makerere University held on 15th February 2023.
The Chancellor Prof. Ezra Suruma (C) witnesses as a Prudential Uganda representative presents a USD 500 dummy cheque to Mwesigwa Mark Lewis (R) who scored a CGPA of 4.00 in the Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science. This was on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony of Makerere University held on 15th February 2023.

He also appreciated the parents for the financial support to the students despite the economic hardships.

To the graduands, the chancellor said, “the hour has now come for you to go out to the field, to fight the good fight, to run the race for which you have been preparing. I appeal to you to remember love in the middle of the tough battles ahead. Remember love. Pray for the possibility of joy in a sad world. Ponder the possibility of godliness and contentment in a broken world. Remember love in an apparently loveless world.”

Highlights of the year 2022 as we celebrate 

Government, through the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development accepted to take over support of the Public Investment Management Centre of Excellence at the College. The Centre supports government to provide advanced practical oriented training in Tools for Public Investment Analysis as well as research.

Some of the PhD Graduands on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony.
Some of the PhD Graduands on Day 3 of the 73rd Graduation Ceremony.

The Environment for Development Centre won funding to the tune of 400,000 USD from SIDA to support capacity building for senior government officials in the area of Inclusive Green Economy. This is part of the ongoing efforts globally to ensure inclusive and sustainable economic growth. The Center also successfully hosted the Joint Cross Country Workshop of the global network of EfD Centers at an event that took place in Kampala in July 2022.

The quality of Programmes at the College has continued to attract valuable partnerships. The ACCA Global accredited our Bachelor of Commerce Degree program and in so doing has given an exemption of eight of the possible thirteen papers to students graduating from our Bachelor of Commerce Degree Programme. The College also partnered with Prudential Assurance Uganda Limited to recognize outstanding students of Actuarial Science Programme. The leading five students graduating from the Programme will receive a full scholarship to pursue the Professional Actuarial qualification in addition to a cash prize of 500 USD.

Business & Management

UNCDF Officials Strengthen Collaboration with CoBAMS School of Business

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Prof. Godfrey Akileng (L), Ms. Fiona Luswata from UNCDF (4th L), Dr. Eric Nzibonera (5th L), Ms. Jennifer Bukokhe (5th R), Prof. Edward Bbaale (4th R), Dr. Mkhululi from UNCDF (3rd R), Prof. Bruno Yawe (2nd R) and other officials at the meeting. Visit by officials from the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) to the College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS) to bolster their longstanding partnership, 18th June 2024, Conference Room, Room 2.2B, Level 2, School of Business, College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS), Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.

Officials from the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) recently visited the College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS) to bolster their longstanding partnership. Led by Jennifer Bukokhe, Deputy Director of Local Transformative Finance at UNCDF, the delegation focused on enhancing joint research endeavors and capacity building initiatives.

Dr. Yusuf Kiwala highlighted the fruitful outcomes of their collaboration, including pioneering research in groundwater financing and the development of a corresponding framework, culminating in a published book chapter. The collaboration also yielded a public investment management calculator for small project appraisal, alongside presentations at prominent international conferences.

Further initiatives encompassed analyses on urban refugees’ economic impact and the establishment of the Masters in Development Finance (MSDF) program, aimed at equipping future leaders with critical skills for addressing financial challenges in developing nations.

Left-Right: Ms. Fiona Luswata from UNCDF, Prof. Bbaale, the Principal, Ms. Jennifer Bukokhe and Dr. Mkhululi from UNCDF during the meeting on June 18, 2024. Visit by officials from the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF) to the College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS) to bolster their longstanding partnership, 18th June 2024, Conference Room, Room 2.2B, Level 2, School of Business, College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS), Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa.
Left-Right: Ms. Fiona Luswata from UNCDF, Prof. Bbaale, the Principal, Ms. Jennifer Bukokhe and Dr. Mkhululi from UNCDF during the meeting on June 18, 2024.

During the visit, Prof. Edwards Bbaale, Principal of CoBAMS, underscored UNCDF’s pivotal role in advancing research and education within development finance. He expressed appreciation for the opportunities to showcase CoBAMS’ findings globally and emphasized the necessity of ongoing collaboration and investment in research to tackle evolving sectoral challenges. Prof. Bbaale highlighted the contributions of research centers like the PIM Center of Excellence and advocated for partnerships with industry experts and academic institutions to foster innovation and knowledge exchange. Prof. Bbaale appealed to UNCDF to consider sponsoring of individuals willing to pursue the MSDF.

Dr. Godfrey Akileng, Dean of the School of Business, emphasized the program’s responsiveness to industry needs, particularly in addressing Africa’s infrastructure challenges. He stressed the importance of practical training and partnerships for enriching student experiences and preparing graduates for industry demands.

UNCDF affirmed its commitment to supporting CoBAMS through continued research collaboration, capacity building, technical assistance, and staff exchanges. Ms. Bukokhe introduced Dr. Mkhululi Ncube, emphasizing his role in promoting financial inclusion and blended financing strategies in Uganda. Dr. Ncube expressed enthusiasm for future collaborations with CoBAMS, pledging UNCDF’s ongoing support through various initiatives. The partnership between UNCDF and CoBAMS continues to drive impactful research and educational advancements in development finance, positioning both entities at the forefront of sectoral innovation and positive change.

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Economics Students and Research Fellows from Environment for Development, Makerere University Donate 2,000 Tree Seedlings to Masaka District Local Government

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Dr. John Seruyange and Mr. Jordan Semwanga, with Ms. Juliet Najjumba, the Principal Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), Mr. Kabugo Denis Paul, the Senior Assistant CAO, and Ms. Rose Nakyejjwe, the District Natural Resources Officer, Students and Research Fellows at Masaka District Local Government (DLG) headquarters. Students from Economics program at the College of Business and Management Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa, in conjunction with Research Fellows from Environment for Development (EfD), Makerere University donation of 2,000 tree seedlings to Masaka District Local Government (DLG), 14th June 2024.

Students from Economics program at the College of Business and Management Sciences, Makerere University in conjunction with Research Fellows from Environment for Development (EfD), Makerere University, have today June 14, 2024 made a significant contribution to restoration of Uganda’s forest cover by donating 2,000 tree seedlings to Masaka DLG. The submission of the trees was held at the district office premises and was attended by notable officials and School of Economics faculty members.

Leading the students were their lecturers, Dr. John Seruyange and Mr. Jordan Semwanga, who emphasized the importance of environmental stewardship. The tree seedlings were officially received by Ms. Juliet Najjumba, the Principal Chief Administrative Officer (CAO), along with Mr. Kabugo Denis Paul, the Senior Assistant CAO, and Ms. Rose Nakyejjwe, the District Natural Resources Officer.

Dr. John Seruyange with students and research fellows assist Mr. Kabugo Denis Paul plant a tree. Students from Economics program at the College of Business and Management Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa, in conjunction with Research Fellows from Environment for Development (EfD), Makerere University donation of 2,000 tree seedlings to Masaka District Local Government (DLG), 14th June 2024.

In addition to the handover, students participated in planting some of the trees at the district offices, symbolizing their hands-on commitment to combating climate change. This donation is part of the students’ annual campaign to promote environmental sustainability, an initiative strongly supported by the Environment for Development (EfD) Centre at the college.

Dr. Seruyange highlighted the dual purpose of the event: “Our goal is not only to provide tangible support to Masaka DLG forest reforestation efforts but also to inspire a culture of environmental responsibility among our students and the broader community.”

He added, “through this initiative, we aim to demonstrate the practical application of economic principles in addressing global challenges such as environmental destruction and climate change. It is a testament to our commitment to nurturing well-rounded graduates who are equipped to make a positive impact in the world.”

Students from Economics program at the College of Business and Management Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa, in conjunction with Research Fellows from Environment for Development (EfD), Makerere University donation of 2,000 tree seedlings to Masaka District Local Government (DLG), 14th June 2024.

Ms. Najjumba expressed her gratitude for the donation, stating, “These seedlings will greatly contribute to our efforts to enhance green spaces in Masaka. We are thankful to the students and faculty of Makerere University for their continued support and partnership.”

Mr Kabugo called on the students to do an annual monitoring and evaluation of the donations to see if the trees were indeed planted and what impact they are creating on the environment.

The students were also called upon to focus on eliminating the use of plastics. Ms Nakyejjwe explained the damage plastics cause to soils and the entire environment.

Students from Economics program at the College of Business and Management Sciences, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda, East Africa, in conjunction with Research Fellows from Environment for Development (EfD), Makerere University donation of 2,000 tree seedlings to Masaka District Local Government (DLG), 14th June 2024.

The Environment for Development Centre at Makerere University plays a pivotal role in supporting initiatives like this. EfD is dedicated to the application of environmental economics to contribute to sustainable development. By integrating research, policy analysis, and capacity building, EfD aims to address environmental challenges and promote the sustainable use of natural resources.

Uganda faces significant environmental challenges, with deforestation being a critical issue. According to the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA), Uganda loses approximately 122,000 hectares of forest cover annually. This deforestation contributes to adverse effects on climate, biodiversity, and livelihoods. Climate change exacerbates these issues, leading to more frequent and severe droughts, floods, and unpredictable weather patterns. These environmental changes threaten agriculture, water resources, and the overall well-being of the population.

This annual tree donation campaign by Economics students underscores Makerere University‘s dedication to fostering academic excellence alongside social responsibility. The initiative not only aids in environmental conservation but also serves as a valuable educational experience for the students involved. By addressing deforestation and climate change through such actions, the university contributes to the broader goal of sustainable development in Uganda. Last year, the students donated seedlings to Kiboga DLG.

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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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