KAMPALA – Prof. Waswa Balunywa, the Principal of Makerere University Business School – MUBS has urged the graduands to start their own businesses, however small, other than hanging on the streets looking for jobs.
The Professor was on Friday giving a keynote speech at the university’s 15th graduation ceremony held at the university’s main campus in Nakawa. The event was virtual with only the best-performing students physically present due to Covid-19 restrictions.
“The world has changed tremendously and continues to change. There are hundreds if not thousands of young people on the street. One of the things we try to do in this institution is to empower you to be able to go out and start your own businesses. We prepare you for interviews, to be able to get into work and be different. Find something that you can do. Even with 50,000, you can start a business,” Balunywa urged the graduands.
He also asked them to be diverse and target digital markets, saying that it is the way to go.
“As young people, the business has changed, it’s online. How much online engagements do you?”, he urged before warning them to be careful in the world.
“Remember, as you go out of this gate, the world is very different. The world out there is not kind.”
Prof Balunywa revealed that the graduation ceremony consisted of two consecutive years.
“Last year we were unable to graduate a group of 2019/2020 and so we are combining it with a group of 2020/2021.”
Balunywa said that because of the Coronavirus, the school has changed in teaching methods relying more on online.
“I must say that we tried teaching online about 7 years back but with a lot of difficulty. Change is not easy; many lecturers didn’t want to go that way but as coronavirus set on we have changed the way we teach.”
“The online teaching in this institution has been going on for a very long time. We have engagements with the University of Nairobi, University of Dar-el-Salam, Mt Kenya University, Southern University among others and I should report that for the last one year, most of these engagements have been low-key. Our students recently visited Mt Kenya University in Nairobi led by Guild President and were able to see that actually, Mt Kenya University was ahead in e-learning much more than many of our universities in this country and much more than MUBS, and this created desire for us to be able to move ahead and embrace this technology,” he said.
Presiding over the function, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, the vice-chancellor of the Makerere University, congratulated the university council, management, and staff for this 15th graduation ceremony.
“This is testament to the great stewardship of Engineer Ngobya and Prof. Balunywa over the years, congratulations.”
He also lauded the university for their students’ discipline and respect for the rule of law, saying that this has cultivated a conducive environment for learning and excellent performance at MUBS.
“MUBS have over the years demonstrated leadership in academia and has produced the best overall and the best students in the humanity at Makerere University graduation for several years,” Nawangwe acknowledged.
“As Makerere University we value discipline and academic integrity and we applaud MUBS for the positive contributions that you are making towards the global reputation of Makerere in terms of research and publication, number of professors and PhDs, and the quality of your graduates.”
Prof. Nawangwe also commended the management of MUBS for the determination to improve the engagement of staff in research.
“Staff at MUBS have done research in various areas of management of polymers, the government forum, the cultural based-model for building grassroots governance structures.”
He asked the graduands to go to the world and exploit all the opportunities available to excel.
However, he urged them to keep away from all sorts of demonstrations and be creative instead of protesting for jobs.
“Let me tell you graduands and all Ugandans that riots will not bring jobs. Every riot we do takes us several steps back because we destroy properties, we waste time instead of being creative.”
The school has graduated a total of 1477 students, including 39 inmates from Luzira prison.