A researcher in herbal medicine, Prof Mauda Kamatenesi, is the new vice chancellor of Bishop Stuart University in Mbarara District. Prof Kamatenesi replaces the Rev Dr Solomon Nkesiga, who has been the acting VC since 2011 when Prof Jossy Bibangamba resigned due to illness.
Prof Kamatenesi’s appointment to head the 12-year old institution has been welcomed by the university community and other education stakeholders because she comes in at a time when there is critical need for scientific solutions to the country’s challenges.
The former Dean of Faculty of Science at Makerere University officially assumed the VC in Kakoba Mbarara last Friday. “It is gratifying to note that for the first time Bishop Stuart University has appointed a scientist vice chancellor who is a researcher in herbal medicine, the Rt Rev Dr Fred Sheldon Mwesigwa, the university Chancellor said during her installation.
“Having a scientist at the helm of university leadership means that the needs of scientists that are often not appreciated by non-science administrators will be addressed,” he added.
Dr Mwesigwa, who is also the Bishop of Ankole Diocese, said the academician’s appointment is part of their dream to promote science in unlocking the university’s potential to tame and exploit nature in order to meet human needs.
The State Minister for Education in charges of Sports, Mr Charles Bakabulindi, who officiated at her installation, said Prof Kamatenesi’s rich knowledge in science is relevant to the young generation as well as the country that is promoting sciences and practical skills. He, however, challenged the new vice chancellor that her vast knowledge will only be understood and appreciated if applied.
Mr Bakabulindi said some of the institutions that have been known as academic giants are being shunned by students because of moral degeneration. “Parents and students look for institutions and universities where they can get the best education. They are quietly leaving some of these used to be respected institutions because of moral degeneration,” Mr Bakabulindi said.
In her acceptance speech, Prof Kamatenesi pledged to improve students and staff welfare.
Prof Kamatenesi holds a Doctor of Philosophy (Medical Ethnobotany and Ethnopharmacolgy) from Makerere, Masters Degree in Environment and Natural Resource Management, Bachelors of Science Degree (Botany and Zoology) , Diploma in scientific research, Postgraduate diploma in Education. She went to Mary Hill and Nganwa High School for her A and O levels.