International Relations Office

Message from the International Relations Officer

Ms. Sheila Niinye Twinamatsiko

It is with great pleasure that I extend a warm welcome to you all on behalf of Mbarara University of Science and Technology’s International Relations Office.This office was opened in 2016, with a goal to promote global partnerships and support a diverse and inclusive community of International students and visitors. We are dedicated to providing you with the necessary support and guidance you need to attain your intended objectives. Whether it is assistance with settling into your new surroundings, academic collaborations, research endeavors or cultural integration, our team is here to ensure that your experience at Mbarara University of Science and Technology is both enriching and memorable.

MUST prides itself in offering a conducive and stimulating atmosphere for learning, research,  innovation and community engagement, which attracts impactful partners across the world. This institution has a long-standing tradition of welcoming partners, scholars, students and professionals from around the world. May your time at Mbarara University of Science and Technology be filled with meaningful interactions, valuable experiences, and lifelong friendships. 

Welcome to Uganda, the Pearl of Africa, a country renowned for its rich hospitality, that provides a wealth of opportunities for cultural immersion and exploration.Come ready to explore the breathtaking landscapes and experience the amazing traditional music and  dance. 

I look forward to supporting you all during your time at our esteemed University. 

Thank you

The International Relations Office, A Home Away From Home

The International Relations Office is dedicated to making a stay at Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) a valuable experience for foreign students. It is the contact point for guests for all matters concerning the organization of studies at the university. We look forward to a multinational and multicultural campus life, where everyone feels integrated.

The International Relations Office (IRO) is under the Vice Chancellor’s office to coordinate and sustain global relations, partnerships, collaborations and networks by closely working with the different facilities, institutes, Dean of students office and the Students Guild Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Public Relations.. This is geared towards increasing MUST excellence and visibility at the international scene. Through this office, international students and other visitors are oriented and ushered into MUST, and Uganda at large. This specifically includes general orientation and guidance, coordinating the acquisition of students’ passes, recommendation for new visas and renewals, coordinating accommodation of international students and visitors and organizing language classes. The IRO ensures that all international visitors feel at home by coordinating their official requirements and welfare while at the University.


Sheila Niinye Twinamatsiko

International Relations Officer

Location: Administration block MUST town campus Email:

Tel: +256782595511 (Whatsapp number)

P.O Box 1410, Mbarara Uganda


1.0)  Full time Programs

MUST has over 90 undergraduate and postgraduate programs. For more information on the overview, minimum requirements and fee structure, click on the programs found in the links below:


Postgraduate: Doctor of Philosophy Program:

1.1)  International Placement/Electives

For applications of international placements, electives and rotations, click on the link here.

Applications from students of institutions MUST partners are encouraged. Semester time is the most appropriate especially for clinical placements unless a community placement is planned for.

The IRO handles international placements, electives and rotations. The office receives, and reviews applications for international students on clinical and community placement, residents, fellows, visiting lecturers and professors to and from MUST. Below is a link to the occasional international student application form. Placements and rotations for students from universities with partnerships are highly encouraged.

1.1.1 Countries of origin of International Students

MUST has full time and Occasional international students from different countries including Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia, South Sudan, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Ghana, Cameroon, Sierra Leone, Swaziland, Nigeria, Benin, India, Egypt, Sweden, Belgium, United States of America, Canada, Germany and Austria. We gladly welcome students from many other countries.

1.2)  Application process

Applications are invited from eligible candidates for programs offered by MUST. The applications for Master’s students are usually open in March and undergraduate (Diploma entry) April-May each year. For PhD and occasional students the applications are open all throughout the year. Follow the link to apply; . For further details, send an email to or call +256-414-668971.

1. Visa Support for Visitors and Students

Visas and immigration information

Visa requirements:

Traveling to Uganda please visit the website for details on how you may apply for a visa for your stay in Uganda.

Note: Your passports’ expiry date should be beyond the period of your designated stay at the University.

Detailed Visa process

  • Go to
  • Look for visas/permit on the upper taskbar, check out for visas under the drop down box and read about the requirements.
  • Then proceed to applications (also on the upper taskbar)
  • You will apply online for your entry visa online before you come to Uganda which is $100
  • On arrival at Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST), you will apply for a student pass/ work permit that will enable you to stay for twelve months/one year(The IRO will ably take you through this process but the details can also be found on the same website).
  • East Africans are exempted from paying for a Ugandan Visa.

2. How to get to Mbarara University of Science and Technology from Entebbe International Airport

Its 295km and approximately 5 hours from Entebbe to Mbarara

 Public means

You will need a cab from Entebbe Airport to the Global bus park in Kampala to cover the distance of 47 km at a fee of about 32 USD or 120,000 UGX.

It is about four and a half hours from Kampala to Mbarara. If you choose to come by bus, Global Coaches is the best choice from Kampala at 08 USD or 30,000 UGX. Global Coaches are available 24 hours a day and there is an option of booking online-

Private means

If you need to use private means from Entebbe straight to Mbarara, it costs from 140 USD to 200 USD(Ugx 560,000 to Ugx 800,000)

Contact the International Relations Office for more information.

3. Weather considerations

Uganda has a tropical climate with temperatures ranging from 21- 25 Degrees Celsius (70-77 F). The hottest months are July, early August, January and early February. Evenings can feel cold after the heat of the day with moderate temperatures. Most regions of Uganda, apart from the dry area in the north, have an annual rainfall of between 1000mm and 2000mm. There is heavy rain between March and May, and between Mid August October and November, It can really rain and shine at anytime!

4. Average expenses per day

Living standards are medium in Uganda. Most daily services are in easy to reach areas and are walkable from campus. The town center is an 8-minute walk from the University. Remember that during the first month of your stay, you may have to pay for insurance, temporary accommodation and deposits, clothing, equipment (kitchen utensils, furniture) and other things. Below you see a rough estimate of the costs a student might have. On the internet you find average prices for specific items like water, milk, a restaurant meal or clothes.


What is a cost of meals (Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner) in Mbarara? What is the average cost of lunch in Mbarara?

In Mbarara, a typical fast food meal costs: 9.65 USD (35,000 UGX) for a Meal at Cafe Havana, Irish Restaurant, Big Chef or Food Mart (or similar combo meal), and 9.65 USD (35,000 UGX) for a cheeseburger. For coffee lovers: cappuccino coffee 2.20 USD (8,000 UGX) and espresso 1.50 USD (5,600 UGX). A link to some restaurants in the city centre.

More details on food items prices in Mbarara in the link below Average meal on campus ranges from 1-2 dollars.

5. Accommodation

Accommodation for full time students

Finding accommodation prior to your arrival is not easy. Sort this out as soon as possible. Prices for rooms vary between $120 and $300 per month depending on the type of accommodation and the location. MUST has residence accommodation available at both campuses. Priority is given to students on a first come first serve basis.

The office of the Dean of Students (DOS) is incharge of students welfare. Contact hours:

  • Administration: Monday to Friday: 08:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 17:00
  • Reception desk: Monday to Friday: 08:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 17:00

Tel: +256 39 3225293


Accommodation for international guests and occasional students on electives

MUST has accommodation at the University expatriates quarters at 5 USD per night. On behalf of MUST, the Housing Officer Lets out rooms to international students, staff and visitors. For more inquiries about the expatriates quarters and alternative hotel accommodation contact the International Relations Office

Accomodation rates per Month in Mbarara

Type of Apartment Amount in Ugx Amount in USD
Apartment with 2 bedrooms in the city centre 700,000/= - 900,000/= 191 - 246
Apartment with 1 bedroom in the city centre 300,000/= - 500,000/= 82 - 125
Apartment with 1 bedroom outside the city centre 250,000/= - 500,000/= 69 - 125
Apartment with 3 bedrooms outside the city centre 500,000/= - 1,200,000/= 125 - 300

 7. Dress code

  • Culturally keep it simple and smart
  • Lightweight clothes with a warm cover up for the evenings are important.
  • Gentlemen: Gentle wear, office wear is long sleeved shirts, a tie, and suit trousers are encouraged for weekdays, and if on weekend duty decent casual attire may be worn.
  • Ladies: Decency is encouraged, skirts and dresses that cover the knees, and your chest. Wear light makeup and few body Nose rings are not accepted during official visits. 
  • Business casual attire is encouraged.

If you possess tattoos, please wear clothes that cover up the tattoos as these are not culturally acceptable.

Do’ & Don’ts


  • Attend your lectures, ward rounds and departmental meetings as scheduled
  • Always wear a name tag
  • Be smart 
  • Carry your scrubs and lab coats for use on wards and closed shoes for your safety
  •  Always carry your ID


  • Crazy haircuts hairstyles, Shorts, Open shoes, Dangling earrings

 Extra items you may carry

  • Book and pen to take some notes
  • A box of disposable gloves for medical students
  • An umbrella, a raincoat considering the unexpected weather changes
  • Mosquito nets and Repellents
  • Portable flat iron
  • Long sleeved tops for the evenings to protect against mosquitoes
  • For clinical students, medical equipment for use on wards such as stethoscopes, Blood pressure machines, thermometers.

How to keep safe your items

  • Label your property like medical
  • Keep note of the people with whom you share your equipment so as not to lose them

Disclaimer: The University will not be held accountable for your lost property.

 Cross cutting issues

Policies on cross cutting issues include; Disability and Special needs Policy, Gender Policy, Anti-Sexual Harassment Policy and HIV/AIDS Policy, check them on the link below

Mbarara University Policies

Checklist for new international students

  • Things to do before your arrival in Mbarara University of Science and Technology:
    • Browse through this International Visitors/Student Guide
    • Familiarize your self with facts about Mbarara
    • Check your health and travel documents
  • Once you arrived in Mbarara:
    • Check in at the Office of the Dean of Students, Academic Registrar's Office and International Relations Office.
    • Complete your academic registration at the designated venue
    • Your student identity card can be picked at the Academic Registrar's office
  • More information:
    • Health insurance is necessary
    • Open a Ugandan bank account (if you need one). Get a recommendation letter from the Dean of Students.
  • During your stay:
    • Have fun 😊- but take care as you do!
    • Join one of the Student Associations
    • Ensure to be part of the International Students Platform
    • Take a kiswahili/ Runyankole or english language course through the University International Relations Office
    • Don’t miss the international students events like orientations and annual dinner
    • Having a good time in Mbarara? Tag us in your Twitter pictures @MbararaUST
  • When you leave Uganda, do not forget to:
    • Check with your faculty if all academic matters are OK and ensure you have cleared with all the relevant departments
    • Degree and occasional students: collect your transcripts and certified copies, or appoint a proxy should you already be abroad.
    • Close your Ugandan bank

Degree/Occasional Student/PhD?

This Welcome Guide is for the following categories of students:

  • Occasional Students (Exchange students, electives, international placements and rotations): remain enrolled at their home university and spend a study period at MUST within the framework of their study at their home university.
  • Degree students: study at MUST with the intention to obtain a degree awarded by
  • PhD students/candidates: perform doctoral studies and research at MUST with the intention to obtain a PhD degree awarded by MUST. Check the MUST for more information about your status as a degree PhD student/candidate.
  • Exchange PhD students/candidates: remain enrolled at their home university and spend a training, study, internship or research period at MUST within the framework of their PhD study at their home university.

Memoranda of Understanding between MUST and its partners

The IRO guides the process of establishing and maintaining links with universities and institutions outside Uganda, draws international memoranda of understanding and monitors their implementation. Below are links to institutions that MUST partners with;

In order to have proper records the IRO ensures proper documentation of MUST-International program activities and offers overall guidance and welfare to international students, scholars and networks regarding expected ethical standards.

It is hoped that the visibility of MUST through partnerships and collaborations will be heightened for transformative global opportunities and programs.