Makerere University Rwanda Alumni Association (MURWAA) seeks to start a campus in Rwanda as the institution celebrates 100 years of existence.
According to Shukuru Bizimana Ruyondo, Chairman of MURWAA, they are set to work with partners, sponsors and Makerere University itself so that people living in Rwanda can learn and get their degrees from Rwanda instead of going to Kampala.
Inaugural operations will be announced by 2024.
Makerere University is ranked among top 1000 best universities in the world and top 5 in Africa as far as research and quality education is concerned.
Different Rwandans have studied at the university, and according to Ruyondo, MURWAA currently has over 1000 members.
He said they do different projects together including MURWAA Save, where they contribute money monthly with an objective to offer loans to members at a low interest rate.
“We currently have over 1000 members. After a year, we will have enough money to offer loans,” he said.
Apart from that, they also advise graduates on how they can choose faculties to pursue at university, especially Makerere, and help graduates tap into available opportunities and go after their endeavours.
Prof Barnabas Nabangwe, Vice Chancellor of Makerere University, said that as they celebrate 100 years of existence, MURWAA made him realise that the University has trained many who are contributing to development of Rwanda in almost every field.
“Makerere has been part of the progress Rwanda is making. The world is changing really fast and the most important thing for all of us is to adopt the digital era because without going digital, we will be left behind. We can use it to transform our economies,” he said, adding the university will be glad to partner with MURWAA to establish a campus in Rwanda.
Faustin Mbundu, an entrepreneur and senior MURWAA member, said it was hard in the 1980’s for Rwandans to be enrolled in the university without Ugandan nationality. He therefore calls it “a special chance” to have studied at the University, which he said compelled him to return to Rwanda and help the country thrive.
He said he is glad to be currently playing an important part in Rwanda’s education sector as Chairman of Green Hills Academy and African Leadership University.
“Education is the first thing that makes a country thrive, especially now in the time of digital revolution. It’s essential that people study and I am happy that our country values that,” he said.
Alice Mutesi Buhinja, an alumnus of Makerere University, said the university has shaped her into who she is today.
She is currently working for the United Nations in Somalia in the area of peace building, and believes Makerere University skilled her to play a role in peace building locally and globally.
Caleb Tumusiime, who also graduated from the University, works at Rwanda Development Board (RDB)’s skills office.
He said he is using the skills he attained to implement RDB programs including professional internships, and in preparing different graduates for the labour market, empowering them with soft skills.