Bishop Stuart University (BSU) on Friday awarded 1043 students degrees, diplomas and certificates with 31 receiving Bachelors Degree in Public Health, a course that was introduced three years ago at the now 10 year old church founded institution.
Ankole Bishop Sheldon Mwesigwa, the chancellor, who presided over the eighth graduation ceremony at the campus in Kakoba Mbarara appealed to the different departments at the university to explore ways of embracing community transformation research, science and technology in order to provide skills for innovation and job creation.
“We need to churn out graduates with occupationally relevant skills if our graduates are to compete in the market place,” Bishop Mwesigwa said.
To address critical community needs the university in 2009 introduced a Bachelor of Nursing Science, four year course. The chancellor said the Synod has allowed for gazzeting some land adjacent to Ruharo Mission Hospital to BSU nursing school.
The university plans to start a Bachelor of Laws Degree next year. Bishop Mwesigwa said Prof. George Kasozi, former Dean Faculty of Laws at Uganda Christian University Mukono has been tapped to spearhead the process.
“I am happy to inform the public that BSU is in advanced stages of introducing a Bachelor of Laws Degree.”
He appealed to the government to give the university a charter because the institution has made significant achievements in infrastructure development, teaching, research and students’ service provision, the requisite parameters.
“Please, our chief guest support us to grow from provincially licensed university to a chartered university,” Bishop Mwesigwa pleaded.Mbarara Municipality MP Medard Bitekyerezo represented the Education Minister.
Bishop Mwesigwa asked students to respect the university rules, regulations and guidelines “particularly those regarding sexual conduct and indecent dressing that have been flouted most.”
The chairman university council Prof. Elly Sabiiti asked government “to take special interest” in the university’s application for the charter. “I am very much aware that the process to obtain a charter can take very long; I wish to appeal to you to take special interest in our application, I am also calling for government direct support to BSU programmes,” Prof. Sabiiti said.
A total of 163 students graduated with Bachelor of Business Administration degree, 116 graduated with Bachelor of Development Studies, 101 with Bachelor of Social Works and Social Administration, 73 with Bachelor of Arts with education, and one- Mr Gershom Aturinda with PhD in Development Studies.
The deputy vice chancellor and acting Vice Chancellor Dr Solomon Nkesiga said they want to transform the university such that it stops filling the streets with unemployed graduates.
He said that this will be achieved by among others scaling up the teaching staff through creating incubation classes for PhD and Masters Candidates and seeking scholarships for women and men with potential.