432 Cohort Five Scholars awarded MasterCard Foundation Scholarships

432 Cohort Five Scholars awarded MasterCard Foundation Scholarships

One of the Scholars receiving her Scholarship Award letter from the Vice Chancellor Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe. On right, is Prof. Aaron Mushengyezi, the Chairperson of Selection Committee of the Scholars Program at Makerere University.

It was a cheerful moment when the Vice Chancellor of Makerere University, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe handed over Mastercard Foundation Scholarship Award letters to 432 Cohort five (5) Scholars. The colorful ceremony was held on 9th August 2019 at Makerere University.

In 2014, Makerere University entered a partnership with Mastercard Foundation to offer scholarships to 1,000 academically bright but economically disadvantaged youth from Africa to study at Makerere University from 2013 to 2023. The project worth US $ 21 Million is being implemented by Planning and Development Directorate (PDD) with the aim of developing the next generation of African leaders and also promoting the strategic objectives of Makerere University and Mastercard Foundation of contributing to Africa’s higher education sector and development.

The first Cohort Scholars that started in academic year 2014/2015 comprised 49 students and the number has been multiplying at each intake.

Addressing Scholars at the Scholarship Award Ceremony in the Makerere University Central Teaching Facility 2, the Vice Chancellor welcomed students to Makerere University and congratulated them upon successfully attaining the prestigious Mastercard Foundation Scholarship. He advised them to effectively utilize the opportunity provided to them by Mastercard Foundation and Makerere University to transform not only their lives but also their societies.

The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe addressing Scholars at the Scholarship Award Ceremony in the Makerere University Central Teaching Facility 2

“Your path as a future leader starts right here, engaging in constructive intellectual debates, leadership activities, research and innovations. If you stay on this path, we have no doubt that on graduation day you will stand tall and pride in yourself, as a model citizen ready to develop life impacting innovations and solutions that can change your community,” he advised.

Prof. Nawangwe emphasized the need for academic excellence and advised the Scholars to utilize the resources and student support services provided under the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program in order to excel in their academics.

“Do not be marginalized because of your background, instead work hard, acquire good grades and leave the University with the best degree,” he said.

He thanked the Members of the Advisory, Steering and Selection Committees of Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at Makerere University and Mentors for ensuring that the program is on course. The Vice Chancellor also thanked the Program Implementation Team for the job well done.

Dr. Justine Namaalwa, the Program Coordinator at Makerere University said that the Selection Committees received 4,700 applications for the available limited slots. She thanked the Committee for doing a tremendous job of selecting the Scholars.

“It was a challenging task but you performed it to your best. This year, we awarded a total of 432 Scholarships, of which 94% are Ugandans and 6% are international students from Burundi, Tanzania, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya and Cameroon,” Dr. Namaalwa said.

The Vice Chancellor posing for a photo with the Scholars and some members of the members of the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program coordinating team at Makerere University.

The Chairperson of Selection Committee Prof. Aaron Mushengyezi applauded his team for its professionalism, integrity and honesty throughout the entire process.

To the scholars, Prof. Mushengyezi said, “this is a new chapter presented before you. You have gone through a lot to acquire this scholarship. This is the right time to start building your dream and career, therefore I inspire you to work hard to achieve a bright future.”

The Principal Public Relations Officer Ms. Ritah Namisango applauded Mastercard Foundation for instilling a give back culture among scholars. She called upon the scholars to fully engage in the university give back activities such as the Makerere University Endowment Fund Run that will be held on 15th September 2019 that is geared towards the construction of the students Centre.

Munduru Pretty, a Mastercard Foundation Scholar in the 5th cohort, pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree of Developmental Economics at Makerere University thanked Mastercard Foundation for the great opportunity that saved her from getting married at an early stage due to lack of finances for her education after senior six.

She urged fellow Scholars to commit themselves towards achieving their goals since the scholarship is a big step towards their future. The invited guests and Scholars were treated to African traditional dances and live band by students from the Department of Performing Arts and Film.

Article by: Makerere University Public Relations Office and the Communications Unit of the Scholars Program.

Nurturing Entrepreneurs: Vice Chancellor Launches Mastercard US$200k Seed Fund

Nurturing Entrepreneurs: Vice Chancellor Launches Mastercard US$200k Seed Fund

Prof. Eria Hisali (Centre with Mic) is joined by Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program Staff (MCFSP), Alumni and Scholars to launch the Entrepreneurship Seed Fund and MCFSP Alumni Association on 15th February 2019, Makerere University, Kampala Uganda. The Seed Fund worth US$200,000 is in line with the Foundation’s two-year Strategy dubbed Young Africa Works.

On Friday, 15th February 2019, the Vice Chancellor of Makerere University, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe represented by the Principal, College of Business and Management Sciences (CoBAMS) Prof. Eria Hisali launched the Entrepreneurship Seed Fund for the Mastercard Foundation Scholars and alumni of Makerere University. The Entrepreneurship Seed Fund will support Scholars and alumni to create economic opportunities within their communities through social ventures.

The Mastercard Foundation announced a seed funding of US$2,000,000 on 11th August 2018 at the Baobab Summit in Kigali, Rwanda, to implement the Foundation’s Strategy in Africa titled: Young Africa Works in the next two years (2018 to 2020). The strategy focuses on finding solutions to the youth employment challenge and reducing poverty in Africa. The Foundation believes that young people, especially Scholars, will drive and lead change in Africa and are already working hard to fulfill this vision.

Makerere a partner university with Mastercard Foundation received US$200,000 as an Entrepreneurship Seed Fund. According to the Coordinator of the MCF Scholars Program at Makerere University Dr. Florence Nakayiwa, the funding will be geared towards nurturing scholars to come up with social and business ventures. The funds will also help to deepen the development of skills and mindsets required of Scholars as transformative leaders, committed to improving the lives of others.

“The Program Implementation Team designed a seed funding framework to ensure that, the fund will have the greatest impact possible in developing the Scholars as transformative leaders, creating jobs and change through the business ventures. In some cases, Scholars’ ventures will also serve as a ‘transition’ vehicle for them to gain employment after graduating university through their ventures” she said.

The Vice Chancellor’s Representative-Prof. Eria Hisali (R) and Coordinator of the MCFSP at Makerere University Dr. Florence Nakayiwa (L) applaud during the proceedings

The Internship and Entrepreneurship Coordinator of the MCFSP at Makerere University Mr. John Osuna said that the Entrepreneurship Seed Fund is open to all business concepts or social projects that have a high-growth potential, are profitable in nature, have the ability to create jobs and are scalable. The eligible business concepts or ideas include; innovations in Sustainable Agriculture, applications of the service or technological innovation, food processing, tourism, trading, renewable energy, fashion, education, health, artificial intelligence and scaling up existing concepts or ideas.

Mr. Osuna also mentioned that the Fund is ring fenced for the Mastercard Foundation Scholars and Alumni as Principal Investigators or Team Leaders, but the Scholars are encouraged to work with other non-Scholars (other students in at Makerere University) on profitable and social impact projects.

“The first cycle commences this month on 23rd February 2019 with a Social design course for 6 weeks among other development support inclusive of finance up to US$6,000 per project, and mentorship; the second cycle, will be in February 2020,” he explained.

Eligibility and selection criteria  

  • Scholars in their final year of study supported by the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program at Makerere University.
  • Scholars must be the team leaders in a team of two to four people.
  • Where the Scholars choose non-Scholars on their teams, the non-Scholars must be final year students at Makerere University and should not be more two per team.
  • The business concepts or Social Venture Projects should be profitable, scalable and be able to create jobs for youth.
A former Guild President and Business Development Manager at Enterprise Uganda, Mr. Ronald Edward Mukasa encouraged young entrepreneurs to always be innovative and flexible

At the launch of the Entrepreneurship Seed Fund, Prof. Eria Hisali, thanked Mastercard Foundation for the bright idea that is going to change the mindsets of scholars towards business development.  Prof. Hisali said that Makerere University has embarked on looking for work placements and opportunities that can support students’ social and business ideas.

“We have realized that unemployment is a big challenge to our students, therefore, we have embarked on seeking opportunities that can provide with students either jobs, or ideas to support their ventures. We are getting touch with the government to tap into the wealth creation programs that are geared towards helping youth. The University is revitalizing its Endowment Fund, and we believe that; as the funds grow, some should be channeled to these entrepreneurial activities,” he said.

He urged scholars to fully utilize the opportunity from Mastercard Foundation and build their entrepreneurial world. He further called upon students and other youth to tap into the government programs when he said, “as long as you are organized, and this support will be availed to you.’’ He emphasized.  To the Scholars and Alumni, access to the seed fund is going to be a competitive process. Therefore, to the business projects that succeed I wish you the best in your new enterprises and to the ones that do not succeed, I believe the skillset acquired during the development support will place you in a better position to pitch your projects to other organizations in Uganda and beyond for funding.”

Some of the Scholars who attended the event smile for the camera

Mr. Ronald Edward Mukasa, the Business Development Manager at Enterprise Uganda, encouraged young entrepreneurs to always be innovative and flexible.  In a presentation he made, Mr. Mukasa called upon scholars to pay attention to the 3Cs (Care, Competence and Character) when preparing to join the business or social venture sector. According to him, the business world is looking for people who can find problems and look out for the solutions. He therefore said that someone’s passion matters when engaging in business.

“The reason one goes to school is to discover him or herself. Have passion while working on your ventures and be exceptional. The new environment has space for someone that has an excellent idea.  People are willing to pay attention to someone who is good at what he or she is doing. Therefore, you need to go beyond wearing a jersey and be able to score a goal,” he advised.

At the same function, the Vice chancellor launched the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program (MCFSP) Alumni Association; a network that brings together graduates of MCFSP at Makerere University to share opportunities in academics, employment and entrepreneurship among activities. The Principal Public Relations Officer of Makerere University Ms. Ritah Namisango encouraged students to fully utilize all the available volunteering opportunities, since this will help them to accumulate the much needed experience as they transition from the academic to the professional work environment.

The Scholars Council Representative on MCF Mr. Petere Ngobi and the Alumni Association Representative Mr. Charles Katuramu encouraged scholars to always take up leadership positions and develop their societies.

Guests were entertained by a remarkable poem from Mr. Andrew Mubezi; a Scholar from CoBAMS, as well as a team of Scholars from Lane256.

Article Written by Public Relations Office

MCF Scholars Urged to Promote Image and reputation of Makerere University & the Foundation

MCF Scholars Urged to Promote Image and reputation of Makerere University & the Foundation

“As you leave the great gates of Makerere University, always remember you are from the great and mighty University. Therefore, whatever you do, do it in a way that will uplift the name and uphold the image your alma mater,” said Hon. Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi, the Minister of State for Youth and Children Affairs.

The Chancellor of Makerere University, Prof. Ezra Suruma conferred degrees and awarded certificate to a total of 13,350 students during the 69th Graduation Ceremony held from 15th to 18th January 2019. During the same graduation week, 34 Mastercard Foundation Scholars graduated with Bachelor’s degrees in their respective disciplines. On 16th January 2019, the Mastercard Foundation Scholars Programme at Makerere University recognized its best student of the year 2019; Mr. Katulamu Charles who scored a Cumulative Grade Point Average of 4.58, earning himself a First Class Honors degree.

Speaking at the graduation party that was held on Saturday, 19th January 2019, at Makerere University Guest House, Hon. Nakiwala Kiyingi congratulated granduands upon reaching the coveted milestone and advised them to use the knowledge attained to solve societal problems and develop their country.

“The world needs determined, hardworking, and energetic people like you. You are young and fresh with sharp minds; well trained to cause change in your communities.  With you we hope to change Uganda for the better,” she said.

She commended Mastercard Foundation (MCF) and Makerere University for enabling vulnerable Uganda children to access quality higher education when she said, “you have educated and imparted relevant skills upon them.  Above all you have trained these young leaders on the importance of giving back to community. Such a well-groomed and educated team, will never disappoint you,’ she said.

Hon. Florence Nakiwala Kiyingi urged MCF Scholarship Program Graduands to use the knowledge attained to solve societal problems and develop their country

She urged granduands to always remember their roots and the people who impacted their lives.  The Minister advised students to emulate the people who sacrificed their money, life and effort to ensure that they have a better life. She encouraged them to always answer the call that requests for their contribution towards bettering the lives of others.

Representing the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe, the Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Academic Affairs, Dr. Umar Kakumba urged granduands to uphold and protect the image and name of Makerere University by being good ambassadors.

He commended the Steering Committee and the Program Implementation Team (PIT) for building a firm foundation for the students through capacity building and mentorship.

The Country Coordinator of Mastercard Foundation at Makerere University, Dr. Florence Nakayiwa acknowledged the tremendous work done by the Mastercard mentors and coordinators and teachers in grooming the young generation of African leaders.

“You have groomed our students to be problem solvers and innovators with a business mind. This will help them during their career days but also change societies for the better,” she said.

The Country Coordinator of Mastercard Foundation at Makerere University, Dr. Florence Nakayiwa (Centre) poses with Programme Graduands of the 69th Graduation Ceremony. Left is the best overall Scholar of 2019; Mr. Katulamu Charles who scored a CGPA of 4.58 in the BSc in Population Studies

She thanked the Mastercard President Reeta Roy, for being a thoughtful leader and an advocate for empowering the world’s most vulnerable children.

Addressing the audience, the Regional Program Coordinator of Mastercard Foundation Scholars Program Dr. Codou Diaw congratulated the graduates upon the great achievement and called upon them to be responsible citizens by adding great value to their country.

Dr. Sarah Ssali, the Dean of School of Women and Gender Studies (SWGS) and Member of the Steering Committee, encouraged graduates to go out and conquer the world with the knowledge and skills they have attained.

Representing the graduates, Miss Hilda Adur and Gai David thanked Mastercard Foundation and Makerere University for giving them an opportunity which enabled them to continue with their studies. According to Miss Adur, Mastercard Foundation and Makerere University provided the scholars with a favorable learning environment that enabled them to succeed in their studies.

“We have lived a good life at campus. We were provided with all the requirements we needed in our studies these included; laptops, allowances, free counselling programs, travels to other countries. We were mentored, counseled and guided” he said.

Ms. Ritah Namisango, the Principal Public Relations Officer (with microphone) leads Graduands in a countdown before they cut the cake celebrating their graduation

She thanked the Programme Implementation Team, the Steering Committee and Selection committee, Makerere University Management, staff, parents, guardians and fellow students for the support they rendered to students during their time of study.

Ms. Lisa Anenocan, who graduated with the Bachelor of Journalism and Communication, thanked her mentor Ms. Ritah Namisango, the Principal Public Relations Officer Makerere University for the kind advice that helped her to develop and grow her career.

In his testimony, Mr. Charles Katulamu who graduated with the Bachelor of Science in Population Studies (First Class Honors) revealed to the guests that, “Mastercard Foundation changed my life. My education life had come to an end since I had no hope of advancing my studies. However, in 2014 Brac Uganda came in to give a helping hand and later on Mastercard took over while at Makerere. Mastercard Foundation’s investment is able to change the world and I am ready to contribute by adding value to the educational sector in Uganda.”

Mrs. Teopista Kigongo thanked the Mastercard Foundation for shouldering the burden of educating her son and other students. She said that until Mastercard came along, she had given up on her son’s education since she could not raise his tuition.

Article Mak Public Relations Office.