MUST HOSTS THE PRESIDENT OF SAN DIEGO UNIVERSITY, USAOwen Muhangi
In a bid to increase and strengthen collaborations and partnerships on Monday 6th January 2020, MUST hosted Prof. James T. Harris III the President of the University of San Diego (USD) and his team that included Associate Professor James P. Bolender Jr a chemistry specialist, Professor Frank G. Jacobitz a mechanical engineer and Mr.Ryan T. Blystone the assistant director of digital communications and institutional marketing.
Discussions on advancing the partnerships and collaborations were led by Associate Professor Nixon Kamukama- Deputy Vice Chancellor Academic Affairs. Prof. Kamukama emphasized the need to address societal challenges in all the activities we undertake. This will make universities more meaningful.
Through this collaboration, USD had been working with Dr. Gad Ruzaza and Dr. Emmanuel Ntambi to develop projects for water quality improvement. It is important to note that the southwestern region of the country has water that contains minerals like uranium and arsenic which require water purification.
River Rwizi that supplies water in Mbarara region has been threatened by poor farming practices and weather changes and needs concerted effort to be improved.
MUST and USD are developing a 5-year project. The purpose of this multi-year project is for MUST and USD partnering with a network of local and international academic institutions and non-profit organizations to improve the overall health of the populace in the region. The key project objectives will include; assessing and minimizing the impact of poor water and chemical contamination, raising the water quality, establishing internet connectivity in community health centers in outlying villages and applying human centered design and social network analysis methods to improve the effectiveness of interventions while building local capacity to ensure sustainability.
As a way of scaling up this collaboration, the delegation met the staff of Faculty of Applied Sciences and Technology (FAST). The Dean, Deputy Dean and Heads of Departments gave an overview on the current programmes being undertaken. These are Bachelor of biomedical engineering, Bachelor of science in computer engineering, Bachelor of electrical and electronics engineering and; Bachelor of science in petroleum engineering and environmental management. Underway are two programmes; Mechanical and Civil engineering. USD will partner with FAST in teaching and conducting research.
The team toured both the Town and Kihumuro Campuses.
The visit has brought the two institutions to synergize and work together to strengthen the partnership and has set the pace for implementing the current project, writing more projects together, having student and staff exchange programmes and information sharing.
This year we target to widen our collaboration and partnership scope.
Succeed we MUST!