The Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic development (MFPED), through the Competitiveness and Investment Climate Strategy (CICS) secretariat, in partnership with the College of Computing and Information Science (COCIS) held a stakeholders meeting on 20th July 2016 to discuss the prospects of setting up an Innovation and Incubation Centre within the Center for Innovations and Professional Skills Development at College of Computing and IS, Makerere University. The objective of the Innovation and Incubation Centre is to provide a vehicle for nurturing talent in products development using ICT/BPO.
The Principal, Assoc. Prof Constant Okello Obura welcomed the stakeholders to the meeting and thanked the students that came up with the idea of an Innovation and Incubation Center as well as highlighting that the College was moving in the right direction towards solving national challenges.
“Let’s give our best ideas to have a successful centre to ensure there are no failures since most startups have failed because of poor planning.” The Principal said.
The students then presented a synopsis of the entire idea by defining what the Innovation and Incubation Centre’s operational and organizational structure, sustainability plan and its monitoring and evaluation mechanisms. The centre will mentor creative developers interested in finding solutions to the many challenges faced in the country.
Dr. Peter Ngategize, the National Coordinator at the Ministry of Finance urged the group to focus on Education, Health and Agriculture. He further urged the team to focus on the productivity of the idea in making business and requested the College to identify talented students early and nurture them.
The presentations aroused a lot of reactions from the audience and the major concern was on the sustainability of the Centre. The students were advised to dig deeper into why previous Centre’s have failed but also pick a leaf from the success stories of internationally based Innovation and Incubation Centre’s.
Mr. Acer Godfrey, a Board member of the National Planning Authority advised the students to avoid duplication and overlap of ideas and mandate protectionism to save time.
Mr. Martin Ssekajja, the Deputy Director ICT for Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) urged the team to be market oriented and to not only engage the private sector but the Government as well.
Students from Lake View Secondary School, Jinja visited the College of Computing and Information Science on 21st July 2016 as part of an ICT tour to Makerere University. The students toured the facilities of the College (i.e. Block B) and got the opportunity to see the lecture halls and computer labs.
Mr. Charles Halonda-Funa, the Communications officer at the College was the tour guide and provided the students with the necessary information about the courses offered at the College. He encouraged the students to work hard and attain the grades required to get admitted at Makerere University since admission to the University is very competitive. He also encouraged their teachers to continue sensitizing the students on ICT since all professions use it.
Makerere University in partnership with University of Bergen, University of Juba and Dar-es-salaam Institute of Technology received a grant from NORAD, the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation under its NORHED programme. The project titled “improving Weather Information Management in East Africa for effective service provision through the application of suitable ICTs (WIMEA-ICT).
WIMEA-ICT now invites applications for FOUR full-time two year Masters Scholarships tenable at Makerere University. The recipients of the Masters scholarships will be required to give research support to the already ongoing Ph.D students in the following research areas:
Research topics for this Masters Scholarships
|Masters CODE||Area/Discipline||Number of Masters Positions|
|WIMEA-ICT: M.Sc.2||Information Systems / Software Engineering||1|
|WIMEA-ICT: M.Sc.3||Computing/Electrical Engineering||1|
|WIMEA-ICT: M.Sc.4||Computer Science/Software Engineering||1|
A high-level description of the intended research work to be done in each component can be found at http://cis.mak.ac.ug/wimea/index.php/scholarships
- The successful Master candidates will receive in addition to Full Tuition and Functional Fees at Makerere University, a living allowance of 2,400 NOK every month for a period of two years.
- The successful Masters candidates will be entitled to workshops, seminars, conferences, facilitation for field study, printing of thesis, publication among others.
The applicant must be already admitted to Makerere University in any of the above-mentioned disciplines. The list of requirements is as follows:
- The candidate must hold a Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field and possess competence in areas relevant to the position.
- The candidate must be willing to sign a contract that commits him/her to work at either Makerere University or University of Juba for atleast two years on completion of their studies
- With the applicant’s permission, Makerere University may also conduct a reference check before appointment.
- All qualified persons are encouraged to apply for the scholarship, irrespective of cultural background, gender, age or disability.
- Women are especially encouraged to apply.
- Applicants should attach proof of admission or application for the relevant masters programmes at Makerere University.
- Certificates and/or grades for all post-secondary education, up to and including the bachelor's level;
- A Masters concept aligning with one (or more) of the above described areas of foci. The concept must be no more than 2 pages including the bibliography (font size 12pt, margin 1 inch, single line spacing). The concept should include a presentation of possible research questions/hypotheses, objectives and justification. An essential part of the assessment of applicants is the quality of the concept. Please check the link at http://cis.mak.ac.ug/wimea/index.php/scholarships for the description of each area of study.
- The applicant is fully responsible for submitting complete documentation. Without complete documentation we cannot, unfortunately, include the applicant in the assessment process. Short-listed applicants will be invited for interviews.
Closing date: 30th June 2016 at 17:00 GMT.
For further information please contact:
• Dr. Julianne Sansa-Otim
Phone: +256 414 540628/ +256 772 310038 / 0772621910/+256 757 734717
The MIT (Masters in Information Technology) Carnegie supported Programme has been visiting Makerere University every month of June for the last five years. The programme was made to build capacity within sub-Saharan African countries to empower the next generation of Library and Information professionals. With this knowledge and skills that apply modern Information Communication and Technology (ICT), they will be able to support Academics and research in Africa.
The Principal, Assoc. Prof. Constant Okello Obura opened the workshop and welcomed all the participants to Uganda and Makerere University. The Principal advised them to be keen and not be tricked when shopping with an inflated currency and assured them of the political peace within the country. He further encouraged them to focus on what is important, cooperate with supervisors and try their best to complete their course within three years.
Some of the presentations made by the Masters students included: Digitizing Collection of Data for Buganda Kingdom presented by Patrick Sekikome, Digitizing University of Ghana Library Systems, presented by Kwesi Sewe, Designing a Repository Service for University of Bagamoyo, Tanzania, presented by Pantaleo Masawe. How Libraries can use Mobile Technology to provide Agricultural Information, presented by Fredric from University of Venda, Zimbambwe.
Applications are accepted only from Carnegie partner institutions and countries. These include; South Africa, Uganda, Nigeria, Tanzania and Ghana. However, anyone may apply for this course, considering that all fees should be paid by the student or the university. Twenty prospective students are selected every year for admission into the fully funded programme in addition to possible non-funded students. Selection is based on previous education, work experience and the strength of submitted portfolios.
Applicants must meet the basic requirements which include; at least an Honors degree in Library and Information Sciences, a Masters in Library and Information Science degree or equivalent degree from a reputable University; younger than 45 years of age, past academic performance; proficiency in English; work experience; current job description and responsibilities; a recommendation letter from the current employer and commitment from the current employer that they will make time available for the employee to focus on his/her studies, including visits to the University of Pretoria.
Makerere University, College of Computing and IS hosted the Data science Summer School from 27TH June to 29th June 2016. The workshop targeted graduate students, researchers and professionals working with huge amounts of data or unique datasets.
The Summer school focuses on introductory and advanced learners in Data science and Machine learning as well as moderate to advanced practical and tutorial sessions where participants engage with datasets applying Machine learning techniques to derive inference for data.
The lecturers were given by distinguished world renowned researchers and practitioners from Sheffield University, IBM Research, Facebook, Global Pulse Lab (Kampala) and the AI (Artificial Intelligence) and Research Data Science Lab at Makerere University. To benefit from this course, participants were encouraged to have some background in programming particularly with Python.
Dr. Mike Smith from Sheffield University lectured on Classification and specialized on Acute Malnutrition Screening in order to determine people that have severe malnutrition. He also used the Mid-Upper-Arm Circumference (MUAC) and the Weight for Height Z-score (WHZ) methods to determine malnutrition.
Data science seeks to exploit advances in machine learning and statistics to make sense of the growing amounts of data available from various sources. In Africa, a number of problems in areas such as healthcare, agriculture, disaster response and wildlife conservation would benefit greatly if domain experts were exposed to data science techniques. These skills would allow practitioners to extract useful information from these abundant sources of raw data