Development Studies Department Organize 2018 Annual Seminar

By Matthew Kanu..

Students And Lecturers Of The Development Studies Department After The Seminar

It is now a tradition for the University of Makeni Development Studies Department to organize seminars annually for the final year students of the department. This year’s seminar was held recently at the Fatima Campus.

Head of Department Unisa Patrick Kamara confirmed that over 50 final year students participated in the seminar. In his address to the students Mr. Kamara said the seminar was organized to instill skills that would enable students to think outside the box and be job creators rather than job seekers.

In his address to the students of the department, Vice Chancellor Professor Joseph Turay described the seminar as a yard stick to face the challenges of globalization when they leave the shores of the University. “To overcome the challenges of globalization you have to think locally and globally” said Professor Turay, advising the students to be innovative, adaptive and express the ability to manage time and space.

Keynote Speaker Mariama Maco Conteh

This year’s keynote speaker was Mariama Maco Conteh, a graduate of the department. Other speakers included Dr. Rebecca Esliker (a leading psychologist in Sierra Leone) and Mohamed S. Conteh (Director of an organization called MADAM Sierra Leone and founder of Sierra Leone Network on the Right to Food). This year’s theme was “Globalization and it challenges facing students”.

In their presentations the speakers, informed the students that the major challenge they will face when they graduate is the lack of internet connectivity in the country and the ability to use social media as global tool for change . They said for students to overcome the challenges of globalization facing them , universities must introduce undergraduate programmes targeting the job market. Students must be ready to fail many times before succeeding in life, and must be able to make use of the available opportunities around within and outside their environment.

Book on Ebola Epidemic Launched at UNIMAK

Professor Ibrahim Abdullah

Two renowned professors of history in Sierra Leone are presently on a nationwide launching of their book title “Understanding West Africa’s Ebola Epidemic : Towards a Political Economy”. The book is a historical perspective of the Ebola outbreak in west Africa and gives an account of the outbreak in the three worst effected countries: Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

Professor Ibrahim Abdullah and Professor Ismail Rashid are presently launching the book in higher institutions of learning in Sierra Leone, and recently presented the book in front of hundreds of students and staff of the University of Makeni.

Students From The Republic Of Guinea in UNIMAK

Correspondent Matthew Kanu writes:

34 Guinean students from King Mo Roi the 6th University arrived at the University of Makeni (UNIMAK) on the 5th August 2018 to learn how to write, read and speak English.

In his address during an orientation for the students at the beginning of their four week course, King Mo Roi 6th University lecturer Moussa Camara praised the high level of hospitality displayed by staff and students of UNIMAK upon their arrival. Mr. Camara informed journalists that UNIMAK is their second home as the decision to partner with UNIMAK is a step in the right direction for the Human Resource Development of Guinea and Sierra Leone.

Guinean students from King Mo Roi the 6th University and UNIMAK staff.

Early this year the founder of King Mo Roi 6th University signed a partnership agreement with UNIMAK not only in learning how to write and speak English but to entirely cooperate in other fields of academia and development. The signing of this agreement was described by many here at UNIMAK as the beginning of new chapter in the promotion of higher quality education in the Mano River Union. This is the first time UNIMAK is in agreement with a Francophone University in the West African Sub Region since it inception in 2009.

Dean of Commerce and Management Victoria Iheancho admonished the students of King Mo Roi 6th University to be steadfast in their ambition to write and speak English well. Madam Iheancho was happy to hear that previous students from the King Mo Roi 6th University are performing well in their jobs. “I am happy that majority of past students who attended the training gained meaningful employment upon their return to Guinea after they completed the one month period at UNIMAK” she explained .

Guinea is a French speaking country in West Africa that shares a border with Sierra Leone. This is the third year students of the King Mo Roi 6th University nave come to UNIMAK.

Accounting Science students Sory Keita said in an interview that the UNIMAK environment is good for learning . “There is no noise on campus. The environment is quiet” he said. Like most female students Linguistic student Mabinty Camara praised the organization and professional skills of lecturers at UNIMAK .”They organize an orientation for us. Everything is formally done,” Miss Camara explained. She is confident of increasing her knowledge and ability in public speaking. The majority of the students promised to inform colleagues from other universities in Guinea to come to UNIMAK to increase their ability to read, write and speak English fluently .

341 More Students Graduated from UNIMAK

Correspondent Matthew Kanu writes:

UNIMAK Graduands 2018

The University of Makeni on Saturday 3rd March 2018 graduated 314 students from various disciplines in the 6th congregation ceremony of the University.

Appreciating the University’s effort in training them for the past four years the best female student Elizabeth Momodu said she was proud enough to represent the university at all levels of society. She said the training she received over the years shaped her world view or way of thinking from small community to a global community. She said she stood tall among colleague students because of hard work and commitment . She therefore called on colleague students to work hard and be meaningful people in society.

In his address to the congregation the chairman of the University of Makeni governing council, Professor Sahr P.T Gbamanja, congratulated the University for delivering quality higher education in Sierra Leone . Professor Gbamanja called on the students, academic staff and management of the University to do more and meaningfully contribute to the human resource development.

Addressing graduands , the Chancellor of the University Bishop Natalio Paganelli said the graduands are harvesting the fruit of years of sacrifice and hard work. “You must be proud for having attained this important achievement . The University of Makeni is proud to offer another set of graduates to the country” he explained.

Vice Chancellor University of Makeni Professor Joseph Turay addressing the graduands and invited guests.

The Vice Chancellor Professor Joseph Turay , in his address to graduands parents and invited guest, highlighted the achievement of the University over the years . For any country and university to progress it must invest in research and development. “The University of Makeni through its directorate of research and development is gradually working towards embedding the research culture in the university, and has completed the construction of a three apartment staff quarters whilst the construction of more classrooms is also going on at Yoni campus. A total of three hundred million Leones have been provided by the Diocese of Makeni, the university and its partners as scholarships for students at undergraduate and graduate level for the 2017/2018 academic year” he noted .

UNIMAK Organises Third Election Public Lecture Series

By correspondent Matthew Kanu

The University of Makeni Vice Chancellor Professor Joseph Turay addressing students, staff and presidential aspirants.

Sierra Leoneans will be going to the polls on the 7th March 2018. Over the past weeks the University of Makeni engaged presidential aspirants in a series of public lectures on their development vision of Sierra Leone 2018/2023 and beyond . Hundreds of students turned out to listen to the aspirants.

First year Mass Communication student Patient Kargbo is a first time voter who said the public lectures of the political aspirants helped her a lot to know the issues of national development across the country. She said the presentation of the various manifestos shaped her worldview of politics as compared to before when she thought politics was not her business.

A student of the Faculty of Commerce and Management Abibatu Tarawalie is also a first time voter who said she was expecting the aspirants to enact scholarship scheme policies for university students across the country.

45 years old resident of Makeni Amadu Sesay is an unemployed man who witnessed the public lectures and thinks education should be prioritized by all aspirants because there is every need to focus on the human resource development of the country.

Students and staff listening to the public lectures

This is the third election public lecture series organized by the University. It is part of the tradition of the University to engage political party aspirants during national democratic elections. The Alliance Democratic Party presidential aspirant Mohamed Kamaramba Mansaray, the All Peoples Congress Party Presidential Aspirants Dr. Samura Kamara, the running mate of the Sierra Leone Peoples Party Dr. Mohamed Joldeh Jalloh and the Peoples Democratic Change presidential aspirant Charles Francis Margai honored their invitation and presented their vision for Sierra Leone to the general students body and staff of the university.

Speaking to reporters before the lecture the UNIMAK Development Studies Head of Department Unisa Partick Kamara said the University of Makeni is not partisan. “As a University we promote sustainable development and not party politics” Mr. Kamara noted.

The first elections public lecture series was held in 2007 and the second in 2012 respectively . The majority of the presidential candidates discussions around the elections were centered on better health delivery, quality education, free press, agriculture ,job creation and infrastructural development.

All March 7 2018 presidential aspirants interviewed by the this medium indicated that the public lecture series organized by the university is a better initiative for peaceful democratic process before, during and after the 2018 general elections in Sierra Leone. They also opined that such an initiative at university level is step in the right direction for Sierra Leone emerging democracy.

Over 3million Sierra Leoneans will be voting during the March 7 elections out of a population of 7 million people.

In his address to political party aspirants and students, the University of Makeni Vice Chancellor Professor Joseph Turay said the university is a platform for democratic discussions that will shape the future of Sierra Leone at local and international level. “Our aim is to generate new ideas that will strengthen our democracy” Professor Turay emphasized.

As the country prepares for the March elections many people at home and abroad are expecting a nonviolent electoral process .