Mukwatsibwe explained that unlike in the past, the public’s perception towards technical education has tremendously improved.
A cross section of graduands at Uganda Technical College Bushenyi's 11th graduation Photo by Chris Mugasha
A total of 683 students graduated at the Uganda Technical College (UTC) in Bushenyi district on Saturday after completing their studies in different technical courses.
"The graduands have withered hard and harsh conditions to acquire knowledge in technical education," said the college principal, Silver Mukwatsibwe, as he delivered his congratulatory message.
Among the graduates is a church Reverend, Rev Micheal Bamwiine.
Out of 683, 214 were awarded diplomas in Building and Civil Engineering, 50 in Construction Engineering, 85 Water Engineering, 78 in Architecture and 7 in Ceramics Engineering, among others.
"The graduates are now ready for the job market," Mukwatsibwe noted.
At the graduation ceremony where male students dominated with 84%, 17 were awarded as best performers. He, however, said that the number of female graduands is steadily improving from 9% at the 10th graduation to16% at the 11th graduation ceremony.
Officiating the graduation ceremony was the National Water and Sewerage Cooperation (NWSC0, Managing Director, Dr Silver Mugisha, who congratulated the graduands and the college for adding to the country's skilled manpower.
Mugisha urged the technical colleges and other institutions to increase their collaboration with employers including industries and factories.
"Please train people who are going to do what the industries want, otherwise you are going to be irrelevant," Mugisha warned. He said most of the institutions have been sending products that are not well sharpened making it difficult for the employers to sharpen them.
Mukwatsibwe hailed parents and guardians for having made a smart choice of investing in technical education assuring them that they will never regret. He told the parents and guardians that the demand for skilled people is very high. "Different companies approach us to book our products," he added.
Mukwatsibwe explained that unlike in the past, the public's perception towards technical education has tremendously improved.
"The college has witnessed an increment in student numbers from 260 in 2006/2007 academic year to 719 students in 2017/2018 academic year representing a 183% increment of over the ten years," the Principal said.
The College's Governing council chairperson, Dr Joshua Mutambi, thanked government for transforming it into a Centre of Excellence. He said the country continues to get investors in the industrial sector, which will require a technical skilled population.
Speaking at the graduation, the Executive Secretary for Uganda Business and Technical Examinations Board (UBTEB) Onesmus Oyesigye told parents not to labour with universities advising that, "bring your sons and daughters and they will get the required skills."
Oyesigye implored those on street to reconsider enrolling for skilled courses. "If you took a course and it has not helped you in your life, come and start a new era," he encouraged.