UNIMAK Celebrates Global MBA in Impact Entrepreneurship

Emmanuel A.B. Turay, UNIMAK‘s Communications Officer, writes:

To mark the celebration of the reopening of the Global MBA in Impact Entrepreneurship, the Catholic University of Milan (Italy) and the University of Makeni are organising ‘Makeni Business Forum 2015’ on Saturday 30th May 2015 at the University of Makeni Great Auditorium in Makeni City. The theme for this Business Forum will be “Doing Business in Sierra Leone after the Ebola outbreak and Support programs and Resources for Entrepreneurs”.

This business forum will attract the business community and institutions to network and get firsthand knowledge about programmes and resources available to entrepreneurs in Sierra Leone. It will also attract Small and Medium Entrepreneurs (SMEs) to showcase their products and services to customers and partners. Entrepreneurs will also learn about the Global MBA in Impact Entrepreneurship at UNIMAK.

Business Forum 2015 is designed to discuss the impact of the Ebola crisis in the Sierra Leone Business Community, present the programmes and resources available to local entrepreneurs to reignite their economic system and create ample opportunity for one-on-one meetings and business networking. The business forum will further explore and nurture the new partnerships and opportunities arising between entrepreneurs, investors and other actors of the Sierra Leone business ecosystem. The forum will involve prominent stakeholders from the private and public sectors and the international agencies to engage in dialogue of implementation, advising on key strategic directives related to Sierra Leone’s economic outlook.

Several distinguished personalities have consented to participate in this forum including the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry Hon. Mabinty Daramy, Head of European Delegation to Sierra Leone Peter Versteeg among others. The event partners include Sierratel, Cordaid, EU, ABSL, SLIEPA, ACTB, among others.

It could be recalled that one of Africa’s pressing needs is to have a new kind of entrepreneurs who desire to do more than just making profits. These impact entrepreneurs want to identify and solve social problems on a large scale, to touch their communities and drive a positive and sustainable change. The biggest challenge facing them is how to upscale their impact. Too many impact entrepreneurs have brilliant ideas but fail into executing them, or run inspiring ventures but without being able to reach adequate scale. Part of the reason is lack of both accesses to capital and management skills to transform small start-ups in larger organisations.

It is as against this background and challenges that the Catholic University of Milan (Italy) the largest private university in Europe created the ‘Global MBA in Impact Entrepreneurship’. From this year on, the prestigious double Degree Master course (internationally recognised title) will be also offered at the University of Makeni.

Reopening of the University for 2014-2015

IMG_0134The University of Makeni, in responding to government’s pronouncement on the reopening of schools and colleges after a very long break as a result of the Ebola crisis, formally started its academic work on Tuesday 7th April, 2015. This long awaited moment in the University’s calendar commenced with a mass, inviting God’s presence in the midst of this challenging era. The mass was well attended by both staff and students of this noble institution.

IMG_0135As safety measures are required by every institution in containing the Ebola scourge, UNIMAK is more than prepared in adhering to these measures. Veronica buckets containing sanitised water are available at both entry and exit points of the university and security posts are equipped with infrared thermometers to check the body temperature of staff, students and essential visitors. Other health measures fixed by the institution include the downsizing of the number of students per class, completing of bio-data forms by all staff and students so as to know those that were quarantined, those coming from high risk areas etc, IMG_0138encouraging students to inculcate the habit of personal hygiene, limiting non-essential visitors, and restricting hostel students from going for weekends among others.

Students of the university are overzealous in attending lectures- this is evident when most of the lectures were well attended on the first day of the reopening. Although the Ebola epidemic hit the economy of the country hard, which correspondingly affected the economic status of parents and sponsors of these students, yet still efforts were made to ensure that students continue their academic work as usual.

Unimak return

University lectures were well attended on the first day of reopening

The Vice Chancellor of the University of Makeni, Rev Fr. Prof Joseph Alimamy Turay, is spurring on members of staff as well as students to put make every effort in a bid to set the university on its rightful footing. Lecturers are ever ready to ensure that they fully cover their classes, and students are determined to learn irrespective of the daunting challenges they are going through as a result of the Ebola crisis.

 

The first Molecular Biology & Immunology School in Sierra Leone

Ebola DiagnosticsThe University of Rome Tor Vergata and the Public Health School, University of Makeni announce a new Intensive Course – “Molecular Biology & Immunology of Microbial Infections” to run from 30 January – 24 April 2015

The Course aims to establish the first Molecular Biology & Immunology School in Sierra Leone and is part of the Ebola Response Project of the Diocese of Makeni and of the Italian Geographical Society, in collaboration with the University of Makeni and the University of Rome Tor Vergata. The Course is financially supported by the Nando Peretti Foundation.

At the end of the Course a joint Certificate of the University of Rome and the University of Makeni will be delivered to all students that have passed the final theoretical and practical examinations.

The students reaching the best results will be offered additional training at the Laboratory of Immunology and Molecular Pathology of the University of Rome, or at the International Reference Centre “Chantal Biya” for AIDS, Yaoundé, Cameroon.

Follow this link for full details of the course.

Collaborating Universities receive Sustainable Human Development Education Award

The successful collaboration project between the University San Pablo CEU-Madrid, Spain (USPCEU) and the University of Makeni, SierraGDEE poster
Leone, (UNIMAK), has been recognised by an award from The Global Dimension in Engineering Education (GDEE).
GDEE is a EuropeAid initiative that aims to increase the awareness, critical understanding and attitudinal values of undergraduate and postgraduate students in technical universities related to Sustainable Human Development (SHD) and its relationship with technology.

The collaboration project, which has been coordinated by Professor Luis Perea Moreno since 2009, was one of seven winners which received the “2nd European Award for Best Practices for the Integration of Sustainable Human Development into Technology and Engineering Education”.

Professor Perea Moreno writes: “I have received the award as lecturer and coordinator of the project in Spain, but of course it belongs to all of us in Madrid and in Makeni, who have been involved. The awards are promoting this kind of collaboration between Universities and with a long term vision.”

For more information on the award-winning project, follow THIS LINK

Learning from the Ebola crisis – Training for health workers to strengthen the health system

UNIMAK has developed this imaginative proposal to strengthen the health system by offering training at a tertiary level for all cadres of health workers:

SCHOOL OF HEALTH

  1. Background
  2. Objectives
  3. Description of the project
  4. Short to medium term
  5. Long term
  6. Business plan

Background

Since its establishment in 2005 as Fatima Institute, the University of Makeni has developed its curriculum and activities around addressing development in the country. Such development in any country has always been intrinsically linked to the achievement of adequate health services for the population. Health, together with education, is a sine qua non factor for wealth. Despite the advancements of the country made in the last decade, the Sierra Leone Health system is still weak and limited, and one of the main reasons is the lack of professionals in the health sector.

In the light of several of the challenges faced by the national Ebola viral disease response, UNIMAK is considering how to build capacity for the future. The Ebola crisis has pointed out the need for the training of staff and providing resources in the health sector. The weak health sector in the West African countries has clearly demonstrated the need for the tertiary institutions to position themselves in order to address the urgent need to fill the gap in the heath sector.

Objectives:

Strengthen the health system by offering training at a tertiary level for all cadres of health workers

Specific objectives:

  1. Construction of a building, including laboratories to strengthen the existing undergraduate degree program in Public Health.
  2. Offering a diploma and post graduate  program in  tropical infectious disease  for health workers
  3. Training of laboratory technicians and other skill workers in infectious diseases
  4. Strengthening the existing mental health program and explore the possibility of  a diploma in mental health for nurses

Description Of The Program

The University is already running an undergraduate program in Public Health and a training program on Mental Health for nurses and other related health workers. These programs could be scaled up in to full blown School of Health which could include post-graduate programs on infectious or viral diseases similar to the East African Diploma started by the London School of Hygiene. This School could offer degrees in nursing and public health, and post graduate diplomas on areas from mental health to infectious diseases.

What would be needed initially are clinical laboratories and classrooms for the classes and offices. We are exploring the possibility of linkages with Universities in Europe for collaborating in providing teaching staff to train students and local staff. Land is readily available as the University has bought three hundred acres of land for further expansion of new facilities.

Short  Term  To Medium Term

There is already an establish Department of Public Health offering an undergraduate degree for four years.  This could be expanded to include a module on infectious tropical disease or could start a new post graduate diploma in tropical disease similar to the East African Tropical disease program.

Another short term possibility could be the Mental Health Studies with a diploma or a certificate in psychology. The University of Sierra Leone is already running the diploma and certificate in Mental Health.

Long Term

The long term project could be a Faculty with interrelated departments of Nursing, Mental Health, Dentistry and Medicine.

Business Plan

Short term

A – Infrastructure : classrooms. materials and equipment, salaries

B-  Staff : local and expatriate, volunteers and  staff development

DSCF1473There is already an existing public health and mental staff at the University.There is an additional staff from the Holy Spirit hospital with specialization in infectious and tropical disease and there is also the possibility of networking with the team of health specialists in the country and the University of San Pablo, Madrid and other partners.