Uganda requires knowledgeable, skilful, and hardworking journalists
In an era where professionalism in the country has become rare and where the rush for money has eroded the morals of workers, Annet Mugisha's advice to the graduates could only have come handy.
"I wish to advise you that monetary benefits should not divert you from your professional ethics and practices," Mugisha, the senior official in the Ministry of Education and Sports advised.
She made the call during the eleventh graduation ceremony held at UMCAT main campus in Kampala. A total of 220 students were awarded diplomas and 263 certificates with 238 being male and 244 females.
A total of 483 students graduated in courses which among others include Information and Communication Technology, business administration, project planning and management, social work and administration, public administration, human resource management, public relation management, journalism and communication.
Mugisha said Uganda requires knowledgeable, skilful, and hardworking journalists in order to prepare Uganda into a middle income state by 2040. She also advised graduates to desist from corruption.
She commended the institute for channelling students who are skilful and capable of creating their own jobs.
"For the past 20 years you have supported government policy of skilling Ugandans in the areas of different disciplines including journalism and business," Mugisha said.
She said the destiny of this nation is shaped by the quality of journalists, saying those who promote health dialogue which help the society to stay peaceful and live better lives.
"Journalists should become conscious of their roles towards the society. An inspired journalist should be able to produce good articles that contribute positively in the community he stays," Mugisha said.
UMCAT School of Journalism and Multimedia Communication director Charles Ogwel disclosed that they intend to start a degree programme by 2020.
"We are currently working with National Council for Higher Education so that we are given permission to start awarding degree programme based on our vision," he revealed.
Ogwel told graduates that the expectations of government and the communities they are about to serve demand transparency, trust and hard work.
Harriet Okiira, the principal UMCAT advised the graduates to favourably compete in the job market using the right channel.
"When you enter the world of competition for jobs, you should be in position to compete favourably not to get through the back door but to go through the right channels like doing interviews." She advised.
Juliet Lamunyo, one of the students who got first class at Soroti Main campus said "I am surprised to get first class despite of my father's financial status".
"Sometimes I could not make it to exams due to school balance but I did not give up and I kept on pushing on as I read my books, attended lectures and also sought consultations from my lecturers," A jolly Lamunyo said.
Daniel Sebakijye, who also emerged with first class, attributed his performance to practical skills he acquired from workplace.
He revealed that it is not a surprise to him because he is working for NBS Television, as a sports editor since 2010.