Acting vice-chancellor, Associate Prof. Umar Ahmed Mukasa Kasule, explains what makes Muteesa I Royal University unique
Muteesa I Royal University is a Buganda Kingdomowned institution that was opened in 2007 to contribute to the delivery of higher education in Uganda. OWEN WAGABAZA spoke to the acting vice-chancellor, Associate Prof. Umar Ahmed Mukasa Kasule, on what makes Muteesa I Royal University unique. Below are excerpts.
Briefly tell us about Muteesa I Royal University
Muteesa I Royal University was established by the Kabaka of Buganda to contribute to the delivery of higher education in Uganda. It is a multiracial and multi-religious university where people from all walks of life are welcome.
The institution was licensed by the National Council for Higher Education on April 5, 2005, to operate as a private university.
It opened its doors to the public on October 1, 2007. The university was established in memory of Ssekabaka Muteesa 1 in recognition of his contribution to the education of the people of Buganda and Uganda.
Ssekabaka Muteesa I of Buganda (1856-1884), who wrote a letter to Queen Victoria of England inviting missionaries, is regarded as the initiator of formal education in Uganda. The university has four faculties — management studies, education, social culture and science, information technology, as well as art and design.
Being an institution started by Buganda kingdom, upholding culture and heritage is one of our core pillars. This is because culture gives us identity, so we give it priority. We have two campuses. The main campus is at Kirumba, Masaka, where the former Buganda Technical Institute used to be. The second campus is at Kakeeka in Mengo.
What makes Mutesa 1 Royal University unique?
We are unique in a way that we not only treasure cultural issues, but also pay attention to integrating culture with the modern ways of living. People tend to disregard culture once they receive formal education.
However, at Muteesa, we are different. We uphold and respect culture for everyone. The more we get people from different cultures, the more we feel more energised in our purpose.
We also emphasise the promotion of a holistic education, characterised by a dynamically diversified curriculum and an eclectic mode of tuition. We foster the most prized intellectual values.
These include quality teaching and learning, research, initiative and resourcefulness. Equally valued is the promotion of personal effectiveness associated with a humanistic outlook. This embodies a healthy sense of values, ethical sensitivity and appreciation of cultural diversity.
We are also into projects that aim at solving society challenges. We have, for example, come up with a policy where each student at Muteesa I Royal University must leave with not only a transcript, but also a driving permit. This is because there is a lot of undisciplined drivers in Uganda because people just buy permits. They go for permits when they badly need them.
However, if one sought a driving permit when they are not under pressure, they would take time to train and internalise the skills needed to drive safely on the roads. Our aim is to reduce road accidents by equipping students with defensive driving skills that will enable them to drive safely. CLICK HERE FOR MORE ON THIS INTERVIEW