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Invitation to Mr. Alex Okello's PhD Defense - Tuesday, 6th December 2022

Sun, 12/04/2022 - 10:23
Invitation to Mr. Alex Okello's PhD Defense - Tuesday, 6th December 2022 pr Sun, 12/04/2022 - 21:23

The Dean School of Physical Sciences invites you to Mr. Alex Okello’s PhD defense (PhD Physics) scheduled to take place on Tuesday, 6th December 2022 at 10:00am in the Chemistry Boardroom, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University.

Title of thesis: “Performance of Selected Natural Dyes in Dye Sensitized Solar Cells”

Supervisors

1. Prof. Julius Mwabora - Department of Physics, University of Nairobi

2. Dr Denis Okello – Department of Physics

3. Dr Jane Namukobe – Department of Chemistry

Discussant

1.       Dr James Mubiru – Senior Scientist, Civil Aviation Authority

See abstract below. ABSTRACT_PhD (2) (1).pdf  

PAIRWISE Project Stakeholders' Engagement in Gulu City

Thu, 12/01/2022 - 03:04
PAIRWISE Project Stakeholders' Engagement in Gulu City pr Thu, 12/01/2022 - 14:04

 

Dr Robinson Odong on behalf of Prof. Charles Masembe shared the project overview with participants at the consultative meeting held at Churchill Courts Hotel in Gulu City

Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) is a global challenge but disproportionally affects the poor, women and children and developing countries. AMR is a situation where bacteria develop resistance against antibiotics intended to destroy them. AMR in animals threatens the sustainability & security of food production and the livelihood of farmers. It reduces effectiveness of antibiotics, leading to higher cost of treatment, severe illnesses, and deaths. Globally, about 1.2 million people died in 2019 due to complications of AMR; Sub-Saharan African region alone had 255,000 deaths (The Lancet, https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(21)02724-0).

Some of the officials who attended the consultative workshop

The challenge of AMR is further escalated by the continued dispersal of antibiotic resistance and antibiotics into the environment, especially water sources shared by both humans and livestock. Antibiotics in the environment may induce AMR in bacteria, hence the risk of transfer to humans and wildlife. The Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), World Health Organization (WHO), and the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) recognize the problem of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR), and thus recommend: Prudent use of antimicrobials; and a “One Health Approach” to mitigate the problem.

The representative of Gulu City Chief Administrative Officer addressing participants

The Strategic Research Agenda by the Joint Programming Initiatives (JPI) calls for transnational studies on AMR in both terrestrial and aquatic environments. Indeed, the role of livestock, wildlife and migratory birds in the spread of AMR has previously been under-emphasized, yet they are major reservoirs of ARB and ARG.

PAIRWISE Project implementation

Under a project titled, Dispersal of Antibiotic Resistance and Antibiotics in Water ecosystems and Influence on livestock and aquatic wildlife (PAIRWISE), researchers from three countries in Europe, and two in Africa are investigating the dispersal of Antibiotics (ATBs), Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria (ARB), and Antibiotic Resistance (ARGs) downstream Wastewater Treatment Plants (WWTPs) by comparing different geographical/climatic regions, wastewater management practices and types of water bodies. ATBs, ARB, and ARGs have spread in almost all habitats globally. The researchers are also investigating the risks posed to human health and the environment by pollutants and pathogens present in water resources.

Dr Peter Akoll moderated the discussion on potential sites for sample collection and commonly used antibiotics

Project partners include; National Veterinary Institute (SVA), Sweden; Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA), Norway; Linköping University (LiU), Sweden; Doñana Biological Station, Higher Council for Scientific Research, Spain; National Research Institute for Rural Engineering, Water, and Forestry, Tunisia; Faculty of Medicine Ibn Al-Jazzar Sousse, Tunisia; and the College of Natural Sciences,  Makerere University, Uganda.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 869178-AquaticPollutants, Joint Programming Initiative on Anti-microbial Resistance (JPIAMR), www.waterjpi.eu; and JPI Oceans, www.jpi-oceans.eu. For Uganda, the three-year project is funded by the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida). The African Population and Health Research Center, Nairobi, www.aphrc.org coordinates the funding in Uganda.

Mr. John Omara presenting his views at the workshop

In Uganda, the project is being implemented by researchers from the College of Natural Sciences, Makerere University led by Prof. Charles Masembe. Other team members are Dr. Robinson Odong, Dr. Peter Akoll, and Mr. Mayega Johnson from the Department of Zoology, Entomology and Fisheries Sciences) and Mr. John Omara from the Department of Biochemistry and Sports Science. The study area in Uganda includes the catchment of River Rwizi, Lake Mburo National Park, and River Aswa. 

Ms Ruth Ndinawe, Mr. Johnson Mayega (Right, front Row) and Mr. George Katende (Left, back row) at the consultative meeting in Gulu City

Expected output

The research will contribute towards better understanding of the factors which influence the occurrence and spread of AMR in water systems, livestock farms, and birds. It will also contribute towards the Government of Uganda’s framework to combat the threat of AMR, through the National AMR Action Plan; design policies to reduce the risks of AMR, and the costs incurred for animal and human disease management.

Dr Robinson Odong collecting data at one of the garbage dumping sites in Gulu City

Capacity building under the project

As part of the PAIRWISE capacity building component, the project is supporting research activities of two graduate students: Ms. Ndinawe Ruth Pamela (Master of Science in Molecular Biology) studying “The dispersal of antimicrobial resistance bacteria and genes through aquatic birds under different climatic and geographical conditions”; and Mr. George Katende (Master of Science in Immunology and Clinical Microbiology), studying “Characterization of clinically important antibiotic resistant bacteria and genes in river waters upstream and downstream of WWTPs and hospital effluent”.

Ms Ruth Ndinawe collecting samples for her research

Consultative meeting in Mbarara City

In May 2022, the Makerere team held a consultative meeting to get buy-in and introduce the PAIRWISE Project to the key stakeholders in Greater Mbarara and River Rwizi catchment. The meeting also aimed to receive input from key stakeholders regarding the use of antibiotics in Greater Mbarara district and River Rwizi catchment, to document challenges of Antimicrobial Resistance and identify potential sites for fieldwork. 

The research team collecting samples of  hospital effluent in Gulu City

Gulu City Stakeholders engagement

On 21st-25th November 2022, the research team held a similar meeting to get buy-in and introduce the project to stakeholders in Gulu City. The meeting held at Churchill Courts Hotel in Gulu City was attended by the City administrators and representatives from National Water and Sewerage Corporation, Gulu University, Gulu Regional Referral Hospital, Veterinary Officers, extension workers, and farmers including;

  1. Dr Aliro Tonny – Veterinary Officer, Gulu University
  2. Dr O. John – Veterinary Officer, Gulu District Local Government
  3. Mr. Moses Butele – Principal Quality Officer, National Water and Sewerage Corporation, Gulu City
  4. Mr. Ogweng Peter – Field Assistant, Gulu University
  5. Mr. Okello Richard – Extension Officer
  6. Mr. Opwonya Sunday Francis – Cattle Farmer, Gulu City
  7. Ms. Piloya Kevin – Production Officer, Gulu City Council
  8. Mr. Isaac Kigaje – SRO, Gulu Regional Referral Hospital
  9. Mr. Ogwang Quinto – MLT, Gulu Regional Referral Hospital      

During the meeting, Dr Robinson Odong on behalf of Prof. Charles Masembe shared the project overview with participants, outlining the challenges of AMR, and expectations from the research. Stakeholders brainstormed and listed the commonly used antibiotics and the potential sites for sample collection. The research will take the One Health Approach, encompassing aspects of human, animal and environmental health.

Mr. John Omara collected water samples from River Aswa

According to stakeholders who participated in the meeting, Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) remains a major challenge and dealing with it requires, among other interventions, proper waste management.

The medical and veterinary practitioners at the meeting underscored the importance of proper disposal of expired drugs in addressing the challenge of AMR. “60% of farmers in Gulu do not seek services of professional veterinary officers leading to misuse of antibiotics. This poses a risk to the environment as well as livestock and human health. There is need to strengthen regional capacity in the disposal of expired drugs,” they noted.

As part of the project activities, the research team collected samples from River Aswa, Gulu Wastewater Treatment Plant, Gulu Abattoir, dumping sites, hospital effluent and cattle farms in the catchment of River Aswa.

Details: https://twitter.com/makconas?lang=en

Mbarara Stakeholders Engagement:   https://news.mak.ac.ug/2022/06/pairwise-project-engages-mbarara-stakeholders-on-antibiotic-resistance/

Mr. George Katende collecting samples for his research

 

Dr Robinson Odong interviewing one of the cattle farmers

 

Dr Alice Nabatanzi Wins US $50000 OWSD Prestigious Award

Thu, 12/01/2022 - 00:28
Dr Alice Nabatanzi Wins US $50000 OWSD Prestigious Award pr Thu, 12/01/2022 - 11:28 Dr Alice Nabatanzi

The Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD) is an international organization founded in 1987 and based at the offices of The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS), in Trieste, Italy. OWSD is the first international forum to unite eminent women scientists from the developing and developed worlds with the objective of strengthening their role in the development process and promoting their representation in scientific and technological leadership. OWSD is creating a network of outstanding women scientists who can provide mentorship and be role models for the next generation of women leaders in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math).

This prestigious award is purposed to support Dr. Alice Nabatanzi establish an environment at Makerere University where she can maintain an international standard of scientific research and attract scholars from all over the world to collaborate.

Dr. Nabatanzi, a Lecturer in the Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University is enthusiastic about partaking society changing research, especially the burden of non-communicable diseases in African societies in addition to nutritional deficiencies among the vulnerable marginalized groups (pregnant women, school-going children, people living with HIV/AIDS, and the elderly). She believes unexploited biomolecules are the answer to the cure for new disease pathogens and health conditions affecting the majority of Ugandans and the world at Large. Africa is a hub of biomolecules majority of which have not been exploited. For her OWSD AWARD, Dr. Nabatanzi’s major research focus will be the burden of postpartum hemorrhage in Uganda.

Dr. Alice Nabatanzi during the establishment of the NAPIANA NETWORK which will act as a platform to connect with the  local communities, private sector, Government agencies and the international community

Dr. Nabatanzi will for the next three years build on her leadership and management skills, and develop connections with public and private sector partners to convert her scientific research findings into marketable and patentable products.

Through her already established NAPIANA network (Natural Products Industry Advancement Network Africa i.e. https://cns.mak.ac.ug/blog/makerere-hosts-1st-napiana-symposiumhttps://www.napiana.org/, Dr. Nabatanzi will strengthen linkages with the local communities, private sector, Government agencies and international community in a bid to promote her research and standardized natural products thereby bridging the gaps in the natural products value chain. 

Group photo taken during the establishment of NAPIANA Network at Makerere University, Kampala 

 

Prof. Muyodi Granted Senior Research Management Professional Status

Wed, 11/09/2022 - 03:53
Prof. Muyodi Granted Senior Research Management Professional Status pr Wed, 11/09/2022 - 14:53 Prof. Fredrick Jones Muyodi

The International Professional Recognition Council (IPRC) Technical Review Committee has granted Prof. Fredrick Jones Muyodi Senior Research Management Professional Status for demonstrating core and transferable research management competencies.

In a letter dated 25th October 2022, the Head of the IPRC Secretariat, Dr Pamisha Pillay, congratulated Prof. Muyodi and urged him to use his newly acquired status to further take on leadership in promoting and developing research management and administration in the East African region. “It is believed that the rest of the region has much to learn from your experience at Makerere University,” he noted.

Prof. Muyodi is a member of staff in the Department of Zoology, Entomology and Fisheries Sciences and former Deputy Principal, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University. He is a Water Resource Management specialist with particular interest in Hydrobiology, Fisheries and Aquaculture, Water Quality, Aquatic and Environmental Health and Microbiology.

He has been involved in a number of scientific studies in climate change impact, adaptation, mitigation and resilience, as well as oil and gas exploration and production. He has coordinated many research and development projects at national and regional levels, and built human capacity in demand driven research projects providing solutions to community problems.

He championed the establishment of the research management unit at the College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University, has supervised and mentored several early career researchers, and spearheaded the establishment of several research partnerships. He has over 15 years of experience in research planning and policy development and has won several research grants including the most recent from the US State Department aimed at strengthening Makerere University’s Research, Grant Writing and Publication Capacity.

 He is a trainer and member of top research management and leadership institutions/agencies including the International Research Exchange Board (IREX), the East African Research Management Association (EARIMA) and Southern African Research and Innovation Management Association (SARIMA).

About the IPRC

 The IPRC is an autonomous body that awards professional recognition to research managers in Africa, in particular.

Research managers significantly contribute to the research impact and high standards of governance in organisations that conduct or support research. The IPRC was established to recognise their important work by conferring professional status on them.

The IPRC Secretariat is based at the Southern African Research and Innovation Management Association (SARIMA), and is led by the SARIMA Vice-President for Research Management.

The purpose of the IPRC is as follows:

-To oversee the quality of, and standards for individual professional recognition of research managers

-To conduct peer reviews and to confer professional status on research managers, based on prior learning and experience substantiated through a portfolio of evidence

-To allocate continuing professional development points for attending research management training events

-To advance and promote the professional recognition programme, as well as research management as a profession

About professional recognition  

Professional recognition is granted to research managers (including administrators) for their professional knowledge, based on prior learning, experience, functional and transferable expertise, regardless of whether such competencies were achieved formally.

It constitutes an award or endowment which acknowledges the expertise and accomplishment of the research manager.

Professional recognition is awarded through the review of a portfolio of evidence by peers on the IPRC.

There are three options for the recognition of prior learning, expertise and experience: Research Administration Professional, Research Management Professional, and Senior Research Management Professional.

Other recognized professionals at:  https://iprcouncil.com/recognised-professionals/   

 https://iprcouncil.com/

CoNAS Students Participate in the 2022 National Science Week Exhibition

Mon, 11/07/2022 - 05:36
CoNAS Students Participate in the 2022 National Science Week Exhibition pr Mon, 11/07/2022 - 16:36 The Deputy Principal, CoNAS, Prof. Juma Kasozi at one of the CoNAS students' exhibition stalls at Kololo Independence Grounds on Monday, 7th November 2022

CoNAS students are participating in the 2022 National Science Week exhibition at Kololo Independence Grounds. The exhibition runs from 6th-10th November 2022 under the theme “Uganda 2040; The Future We want through Science, Technology and Innovation.”

 The National Science Week Exhibition provides a platform to showcase innovations and technologies across all sectors that are steering the country towards achieving the national development goals and fighting poverty.  

The Deputy Principal at the Kesha Anti-Fungal and Anti-bacterial gel exhibition stall

This year, the National Science Week Exhibition focuses on Aeronautics and Space Science, Mobility (Indigenous Motor Vehicle Industry), Pathogen Economy, Industry 4.0+, Infrastructure Innovations, Productivity Acceleration, Import Substitution, and Export Targeted Science, Technology & Innovation. On the sidelines of the event, innovations of relevant support services that were invented to catapult the science-led socio-economic transformation, as cast in vision 2040 are being showcased.

CoNAS participation in the exhibition

Like other participants, CoNAS students presented projects to the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation, and following a rigorous selection process, four groups succeeded to showcase their projects under two categories – Pathogen Economy and Industry 4.0+.

CoNAS Students' Projects/Innovations;

  1. An evaluation of phytochemical and analgesic properties of a traditional medicinal plant popularly used in Northern Uganda as a topical application for pain relief and management.  Project team – Alum Sheryl Dinymoi, Adokorach Prossy, Amuge Sheila Marion (Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology, and Biotechnology) – participating under the Pathogen Economy category.
  2. Kesha Anti-Fungal and Anti-bacterial gel. Project team – Mally Antony, Akwii Patience Natasha, Namazzi Claire (Department of Biochemistry and Sports Science) - participating under the Pathogen Economy category.
  3. SerchiT – This is a mobile application that helps to trace lost items such as National IDs, academic documents and others. Project team – Atukunda Angel Twesiime, Itaagi Bright, Akankunda Gerald (Department of Physics) -  participating under the Industry 4.0+ category.
  4. Food Grade Calcium Carbonate. Project team – Mukama Alex, Eron Calvin, Karahukayo Disan (Department of Chemistry) -  participating under the Industry 4.0+ category.
The Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Hon. Dr. Monica Musenero Masanza at one of the panel discussions held today, 7th November 2022 to mark the National Science Week

The main event will take place on Wednesday, 9th November 2022 and will be presided over by the President of the Republic of Uganda, H.E Gen. Yoweri Tibuhaburwa Kaguta Museveni.

Please follow the link below for the programme.

Program for the 2022 National Science Week Exhibition.pdf

 

Dr Godwin Anywar wins UTANA grant

Mon, 11/07/2022 - 00:17
Dr Godwin Anywar wins UTANA grant pr Mon, 11/07/2022 - 11:17

Dr Godwin Anywar has been selected as one of the four recipients of this year’s Uganda Textbook Academic and Non-Fiction Authors’ Association (UTANA) Grant Scheme Award to complete and publish his book titled "A handbook on medicinal plants and HIV/AIDS".

The UTANA Grant Scheme for Authors (UGSA) supports both academic and general non-fiction writers to complete and publish their work. Supported by the Norwegian Association of Non-Fiction Writers and Translators (NFFO), the grant covers book review, editing and publication.

The overall goal of UGSA is to strengthen authorship capacity for increased availability and accessibility of Ugandan authored books on the world market.

Dr Anywar is a Lecturer in the Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University. He is actively involved in research, formulation and development of different natural products, which include herbal teas for different ailments, mosquito repellents, and skin ointments. He has researched the antiviral and immunomodulatory effects of some Ugandan medicinal plants used by traditional healers in the management of HIV/AIDS.

Dr Anywar after receiving his award

 

Dr Samuel Ojelel Appointed Ag. Head, Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology & Biotechnology

Thu, 11/03/2022 - 04:44
Dr Samuel Ojelel Appointed Ag. Head, Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology & Biotechnology pr Thu, 11/03/2022 - 14:44 Dr Samuel Ojelel

Dr Samuel Ojelel has been appointed Acting Head, Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University. He will hold the position for six months effective 1st November 2022 to 30th April 2023 when a substantive Head will be appointed.

The former Head, also Dean, School of Biosciences, Prof. Arthur Tugume handed over the office to him at a brief ceremony held at the Department today, 3rd November 2022.

Prof. Arthur Tugume handing over the office of the Head, Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology to Dr Ojelel today, 3rd November 2022

 Dr Ojelel is currently serving as an Assistant Lecturer in the same Department. He holds a BSc. Conservation Biology, MSc. Botany and PhD (Botany) of Makerere University. He teaches and conducts research in the fields of ecology, plant conservation and ethnobotany.

The Principal of CoNAS, Prof. Winston Tumps Ireeta (3rd R) and members of staff from the Department witnessed the handover

Mandate and focus of the Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology & Miotechnology (PMB)

For now more than four decades, the department has been alive to the fact that the diversity of “plant sciences” as a pure science fits in the light of the roles plants play in the maintenance of life on earth. Both higher and lower plants inclusive of ocean and fresh water phytoplanktons generate and supply the earth’s 100% oxygen through photosynthesis, and for this reason are the main support of all other lifeforms on earth.

The Department of PMB, therefore, has over 4 decades themed its academic and research operations to cover, promote and provide scientific leadership as defined in 6 themes stated below:

Theme 1: Classical Botany: Phycology, Plant Taxonomy, Systematics and Diversity.

Theme 2: Economic Botany: Ethnobiology, Bioprospecting, People-and-plants.

Theme 3: Plant Physiology: Development, Phytoremediation and Eco-physiology.

Theme 4: Ecology: Nature Conservation and Ecosystem Services.

Theme 5: Microbiology: Plant-microbiota Interactions, Microbiology

Theme 6: Genetics, Evolutionary systems, Molecular Biology & Biotechnology

 

 

 

New Grant Award: Strengthening Makerere University’s Research, Grant Writing and Publication Capacity

Sun, 10/30/2022 - 23:22
New Grant Award: Strengthening Makerere University’s Research, Grant Writing and Publication Capacity pr Mon, 10/31/2022 - 09:22

Project title: “Towards a Research-led University: Strengthening Makerere University’s Research, Grant Writing and Publication Capacity”.

Makerere University will be implementing the project in collaboration with Michigan State University’s Writing Centre and Alliance for African Partnership (AAP).

Project funder: US State Department.

Makerere University Project team

  1. Prof. Fredrick Muyodi (CONAS) – Principal Investigator
  2. Prof. Ronald Bisaso (CEES) – Co-PI
  3. Ms. Stella Kakeeto (CHS) - Co-PI

Michigan State University team

  1.  Prof. Trixie G. Smith, Director, the Writing Centre (WC) – PI
  2. Dr Grace Pregent, Associate Director, WC
  3. Ms Ann Allegra, Proposal and Capacity Strengthening Administrator, Alliance for African Partnership (AAP)
  4. Dr Jose Jackson- Malete, Co-Director, AAP

Details in the flyer below.

New Grant Award - Strengthening Makerere University’s Research, Grant Writing and Publication Capacity 2022.pdf

TB-MBLA A More Accurate TB Pre-treatment Diagnostic Tool – Mak Researchers

Fri, 10/28/2022 - 00:55
TB-MBLA A More Accurate TB Pre-treatment Diagnostic Tool – Mak Researchers pr Fri, 10/28/2022 - 10:55 The PI, Dr Samuel W. Wamutu (L) and Co-PI, Mr. Emmanuel Musisi at the research dissemination seminar held on 20th October 2022 at CoNAS, Makerere University 

Rapid and accurate detection of TB is key for guiding effective treatment. To date, the global and national TB case detection, treatment success and case notification rates remain lower than the expected targets under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) partly because of the less effective diagnostic tools currently in use. Smear microscopy, the commonest TB test is highly subjective, less sensitive and is not ideal for monitoring treatment response. GeneXpert Ultra is the current standard of care for TB, as the test is highly sensitive, rapid and even detects rifampicin resistance TB. However, it is heat and dust sensitive, leading to high instrument failure rates. GeneXpert cannot be used to monitor treatment response because it also detects DNA from dead Mtb cells, besides live cells. Sputum culture, despite being gold standard TB test, is prone to contamination and high turnaround time. Moreover, the presence of non-culturable but viable Mtb often leads to false negative results. Thus, alternative, rapid and accurate diagnostic tests that are easy to use in high TB burden countries such as Uganda are urgently needed to improve TB case detection, treatment success, and case notification rates.

With funding from the Government of Uganda through Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (MakRIF), and the University of St Andrews (UK), researchers from the College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University, led by Dr Samuel W. Wamutu investigated the diagnostic accuracy of the TB-Molecular Bacterial Load Assay (TB-MBLA) among presumptive TB adult patients in Uganda. TB-MBLA tool is a novel, 16srRNA-based test with potential to accurately detect and quantify TB in clinical samples, thereby providing an advantage of diagnosing and monitoring anti-TB treatment response.

The research was conducted under a project titled “Evaluating the Accuracy of Molecular Bacterial Load Assay to Detect Mycobacterium Tuberculosis and Monitor Treatment Response to Anti-tuberculosis Therapy in Uganda”.

Mr. Emmanuel Musisi, Co-PI presenting the project findings

Project evaluation and findings

Through the project, presumptive TB cases were tested for TB at baseline (week 0) using TB-MBLA in comparison with Xpert MTB/RIF Ultra (Ultra), smear microscopy (SM) and Mycobacteria Growth Indicator Tube (MGIT) culture as a reference test. TB positive cases were enrolled for treatment response monitoring at weekly to monthly intervals until treatment completion at month-6 and then three months after treatment.

A total of 210 participants, median age 35 years (IQR: 27-44), 135 (64%) male were tested for TB at baseline. TB-MBLA and Ultra had same diagnostic sensitivity (99%) but different specificity, 91% and 78% respectively. Ten participants were Ultra trace-positive, of whom 80% were negative by TB-MBLA and MGIT culture. SM has a lower diagnostic sensitivity, 75% but higher specificity – 98%. 61% of the participants tested TB positive by Ultra and were enrolled into the treatment follow-up arm. Positivity for TB dropped in all tests with treatment, but the rate was slower with Ultra. Consequently, 33% of participants were still Ultra positive at the end of treatment visa-vis TB-MBLA and MGIT culture, which were negative. Rate of change of PCR quantification cycles as a surrogate for nucleic acid degradation revealed that DNA-based Ultra was 3.3. fold slower than the rRNA-based TB-MBLA. Post-treatment follow-up showed all the 31 month-6 Ultra positive cases were clinically well and negative on other tests, except 2 still Ultra positive. TB-MBLA-measured bacillary load among month-2 SM-positive cases who received extra month of intensive treatment was not different from SM negative cases.

Basing on the findings, TB-MBLA proved to be an accurate pre-treatment diagnostic tool with more potential to monitor response to TB treatment than Ultra and SM.

With the positive findings, Makerere University could become one of the World Health Organization (WHO) centres for conducting and rolling out the TB-MBLA technology. The project team calls on TB experts at the Ministry of Health and individual researchers to base on the findings of the study to further investigate the performance of TB-MBLA as a novel treatment monitoring and diagnostic tool using a bigger sample size. The investigations will further inform WHO decisions on TB-MBLA for research and routine use in clinical lab/care.

Dr Julius Mulindwa (R) represented the Head, Department of Biochemistry and Sports Science, CoNAS, Makerere University at the research dissemination seminar

Research dissemination

On 20th October 2022, the project team led by Dr Samuel W. Wamutu and Mr Emmanuel Musisi (Co-PI and PhD candidate at the University of St. Andrews, UK) disseminated the research findings to stakeholders including representatives from the health sector. During their presentation, the researchers noted that the project had greatly supported capacity building through training of skilled workforce, renovation of the TB Clinic Office floors at Naguru Referral Hospital, repair of the freezer and air conditioner at the same hospital, improvement of knowledge of molecular microbiology and TB diagnosis, and strengthening collaborations with institutions including IDRC and MakBRC.

 The researchers extended appreciation to the Government of Uganda and MakRIF for supporting the project. They also appreciated all the partners including the University of St. Andrews, UK for the support extended to the project.

CoNAS First Year Students orientated about Mak Programmes

Fri, 10/21/2022 - 02:09
CoNAS First Year Students orientated about Mak Programmes pr Fri, 10/21/2022 - 12:09 The Principal of CoNAS, Prof. Winston Tumps Ireeta  addressing the students

Every year, Makerere University admits over 10,000 students to various programmes at each of the 10 constituent Colleges.

This Academic Year, 2022/2023, the University has admitted about 500 students to various programmes at the College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS). The College offers a wide range of programmes in basic and applied sciences including; School of Physical Sciences - Bachelor of Science (Major or Minor in Physical Sciences – Mathematics, Physics, Geology, Chemistry), Bachelor of Science in Industrial Chemistry, Bachelor of Science in Petroleum Geosciences and Production, Master of Science in Physics, Master of Science in Chemistry, Master of Science in Petroleum Geosciences, Master of Science in Geology, Master of Science in Mathematics, Master of Science in Mathematical Modelling, PhD in Mathematics (thesis), PhD in Mathematics (Coursework and dissertation), PhD in Physics, PhD in Chemistry, and PhD in Geology. Programmes offered under the School of Biosciences include; Bachelor of Science (Major or Minor in Biological Sciences – Zoology, Botany, Biochemistry), Bachelor of Science in Fisheries and Aquaculture, Bachelor of Science in Biotechnology, Bachelor of Science in Sports Science, Bachelor of Science in Conservation Biology, Master of Science in Botany, Master of Science in Zoology, Master of Science in Biochemistry, PhD in Botany, PhD in Zoology, and PhD in Biochemistry.

The First Year students admitted to CoNAS during the orientation

Orientation of First Year Students

On 20th October 2022, the College held an orientation for First Year students. Led by the Principal, Prof. Winston Tumps Ireeta, the College Managers welcomed and briefed the students on the requirements for each study programme. In his remarks, the Principal cautioned students to remain focused, disciplined and to make good use of their time at the University. The students were also cautioned against impersonation and malpractice, and advised to be careful about conmen who target unsuspecting newly admitted students. They were advised to network and to always seek spiritual support. The Deputy Principal, Prof. Juma Kasozi urged the students to concentrate on their studies right from first year noting that every test contributes to final grading.

The Deputy Principal, CoNAS, Prof. Juma Kasozi cautioned students to be focused right from first year

In her presentation, the College Registrar, Ms. Hellen Ssali Kalema sensitized the students on various academic policies regarding registration, tuition payment, withdrawal from programme, change of programme, examinations and irregularities.

The students at the briefing held at JICA, the main administration building of CoNAS

In the course of the meeting, Mr. Gilbert Nsanzimana from the Directorate of ICT, Makerere University guided the students through the various portals for online registration, generation of reference numbers for fees payment, creation of university email and access to MUELE – the Makerere University E-Learning platform.

Mr. Nsanzimana from DICTS briefing the students on the ICT services

Important links for ICT services

1.How to activate your Mak email -  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zdJzGQP3eLI

2. How to activate your Mak Student's Portal https://youtu.be/7KisJ4FoTnk

3. An overview of the Mak Student's Portal https://youtu.be/xKdjBasIF28

4. How to enrol & Register as Normal Progress Student (Without Retakes) https://youtu.be/C7rBYCVhfro

6. How to enrol & register with retakes for a previous semester https://youtu.be/l0AwTODx3IY

7. How to allocate tuition that was paid & isn't reflecting https://youtu.be/tJimvIIMQXI

8. How to activate a MUELE account -  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdLjgnOphOU

9. For guidance on all services – www.answers.mak.ac.ug

The College Registrar, Ms. Hellen Ssali Kalema sensitized the students on various academic policies regarding registration, tuition payment, withdrawal from programme, change of programme, examinations and irregularities

Briefing on other University Policies and services

Besides academics, the students were briefed on several other services and policies crucial for their psychological wellbeing, including the counselling and guidance services and the anti-sexual harassment policy.

The Dean, School of Physical Sciences, Dr Michael Owor briefing students on the programmes in his unit Dr Eric Sande briefing the students about the structure of the School of Biosciences Dr Esther Katuura, Head Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology delivering her remarks

 

Dr Agnes Nandutu Masawi, Head, Department of Biochemistry and Sports Science addressing the students

 

The Head, Department of Chemistry, Dr John Wasswa speaking to the students Dr Arthur Batte briefed the students about the Department of Geology and Petroleum Studies Dr Ddumba represented the Head, Department of Mathematics The College President addressing the students

 

Invitation

Mon, 10/17/2022 - 22:16
Invitation pr Tue, 10/18/2022 - 08:16

Invitation to Research Dissemination Seminar - Thursday, 20th October 2022, 10:00am

The Head, Department of Biochemistry and Sports Science,  College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University invites you all for a research dissemination seminar scheduled to take place on Thursday, 20th October 2022 in the Chemistry Boardroom.

Project title: The diagnostic accuracy of a novel RNA-based TB assay tool among consenting adult Ugandans presumed to have tuberculosis disease

PI: Dr Samuel W. Wamutu

The research was funded by the Government of Uganda through MakRIF.

Link for online attendance

 https://bit.ly/3Ta2Im5

Meeting ID: 955 2887 9467

Passcode: 459133

Event flyer below;

Research Dissemination Flyer.pdf

Invitation to Seminar: Application of Molecular Markers in Breeding

Fri, 10/14/2022 - 01:39
Invitation to Seminar: Application of Molecular Markers in Breeding pr Fri, 10/14/2022 - 11:39

The Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University invites you to a seminar about application of molecular markers in breeding on Tuesday, 18th October 2022 at 2:30pm.

Topic - Biotechnology at Work: Application of Molecular Markers in Breeding

Presenter: Dr. Brigitte Uwimana, Molecular Breeder, International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA)

Venue: Botzoo, Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology

Details for online attendance in the attachment below.

Dr B Uwimana Seminar at PMB.pdf

PLANT CONSERVATION COURSE - 18TH-28TH OCTOBER 2022

Sun, 10/09/2022 - 23:25
PLANT CONSERVATION COURSE - 18TH-28TH OCTOBER 2022 pr Mon, 10/10/2022 - 09:25

NORPART project (Building knowledge for sustainable biodiversity conservation, from virtual learning to hands-on experience)

The Makerere University Herbarium, Department of Plant Sciences, Microbiology and Biotechnology, under its NORPART funded project will host a graduate level course in Plant Conservation from 18th to 28th October. This course was designed by a team of experts in botany, from various project partner countries including; Addis Ababa University, Kenyatta University, National Museums of Kenya (herbarium section), University of Zululand, University of Dar es Salaam, Makerere University, University of Zimbabwe, National Herbarium & Botanical garden (SRGH) of Zimbabwe, and the Natural History Museum (herbarium section) of the University of Oslo. This course has already been accredited in Norway and is currently running at the University of Oslo (https://www.uio.no/studier/emner/matnat/ibv/BIOS5219/index-eng.html). Partner institutions are free to adopt the course if it suits their curricular.

The course is held once a year on a rotational basis across the partner institutions. The first time it was hosted by Addis Ababa University, the second by the University of Oslo, and now it is turn for Makerere to host it!

The detailed course content includes the following topics;

  1. Habitat loss,
  2. fragmentation and restoration,
  3. People & conservation,
  4. Conservation assessments,
  5. Conservation genetics,
  6. Measuring biodiversity,
  7. Conservation in practice,
  8. Conservation and politics,
  9. and Conservation in times of climate change.

The course will be attended by graduate students of Makerere University (with background training in plant science related fields), together with Norwegian students from the University of Oslo. The course will mainly be conducted at the Makerere University Biological Field Station at Kanyawara, in Kibale National Park, and partly at the herbarium.

Details on the project in the document attached below.

PLANT CONSERVATION COURSE AT MAK.pdf

CoNAS Research Dissemination: Stochastic Model for Sustainable Fish Harvesting on L. Victoria

Fri, 09/16/2022 - 02:38
CoNAS Research Dissemination: Stochastic Model for Sustainable Fish Harvesting on L. Victoria pr Fri, 09/16/2022 - 12:38

The research was funded by the Government of Uganda through the Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (Mak-RIF)

The Project Principal Investigator, Prof. Juma Kasozi addressing participants

Overview

The Lake Victoria Nile Perch (NP) fishery (fishing and post-harvest activities) is a significant contributor to the social and economic development of the Lake Victoria Fisheries Organization (LVFO) Partner States (Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda). The catch of NP has averaged 250,000 tonnes per annum for the last two decades. During the last decade, the fishery has faced serious problems of overcapitalisation and overfishing and high levels of non-compliance to regulations in the fishing and post-harvest sub-sectors. This has led to decreasing stock health resulting in an increased vulnerability of the resource base and suboptimal contribution of the fishery to the lake-side economies (EAC LVFO Nile Perch Fisheries Management Plan, 2015-2019). The challenges are not unique to Nile Perch.  The main challenge currently facing Lake Victoria is how to sustain the Nile perch and Nile tilapia and how to conserve and restore threatened fish species.

Dr Fred Mayambala disseminating the research results at a blended event held at the Department of Mathematics, CoNAS

Research project

In August 2021, researchers from the College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS) won a grant in Round 3 of the Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (Mak-RIF) to investigate the optimal fish harvest problem for Nile Tilapia and Nile Perch in Lake Victoria. Under a project titled; “Stochastic Model for Sustainable Harvesting of Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) and Nile Perch (Lates niloticus) Fish Populations on Lake Victoria for Optimal Financial Returns and Monitoring”, the research team aimed to formulate a stochastic model for harvesting Nile tilapia and Nile perch fish species on the Uganda waters of Lake Victoria that will ensure sustainability and optimal returns from the harvest. The project was led by Prof. Juma Kasozi from the Department of Mathematics. Other members included, Prof. Betty K. Nannyonga, Prof. John Mango, Dr Juliet Nattabi Kigongo, Dr Fred Mayambala, and Ms. Stella Mbabazi from the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF).

Dr Mayambala disseminating the research results

Research dissemination seminar

On 14th September 2022, the project team disseminated the research findings to stakeholders in the fisheries industry. The blended (physical and virtual) dissemination event was attended by Makerere University staff and representatives from the Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF), the National Fisheries Resources Research Institute (NaFIRRI), Responsible Fisheries Business Chains Project – GIZ, Uganda Fish Processors and Exporters Association, District Fisheries Officers, Busitema University, Kabale University, Gulu University and Mbarara University of Science and Technology. It was graced by Prof. Livingstone Luboobi, former Vice Chancellor, Makerere University, currently a visiting Professor of Biomathematics at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Strathmore University, Kenya.

Some of the participants at the research dissemination event at the Department of Mathematics, CoNAS

Addressing the participants, Prof. Kasozi appreciated the Government of Uganda and Makerere University Management for the support that has tremendously boosted research into national development challenges.  

Since 2019, the Government of Uganda through Mak-RIF has supported over 750 research projects worth UGX90 billion.

The Head, Department of Mathematics, Makerere University, Dr Godwin Kakuba reacts to the presentation Prof. Livingstone Luboobi chats with the PI, Prof. Juma Kasozi, Dr Fred Mayambala, and Ms. Stella Mbabazi, a member of the research team

Compiled by Hasifa Kabejja, Principal Communication Officer, CoNAS

Dr Perpetra Akite wins British Ecological Society Marsh Award for Ecologists in Africa

Mon, 09/05/2022 - 00:12
Dr Perpetra Akite wins British Ecological Society Marsh Award for Ecologists in Africa pr Mon, 09/05/2022 - 10:12 Dr Perpetra Akite

Dr Perpetra Akite has been awarded the Marsh Award for Ecologists in Africa.  This prize aims to celebrate the significant scientific achievements of African ecologists and raise their profile in the UK. It is provided by the Marsh Charitable Trust and administered by the British Ecological Society.

Dr Akite is one of Uganda’s leading entomologists and experts in butterflies. She has made important advances in improving knowledge around insects in Uganda, contributing to assessing and mapping key ecologically sensitive species in the country. She has even had a moth named after her.  

Dr Akite is also passionate about passing on her knowledge to younger generations and takes part in a great deal of outreach activities at both school and university level. Her goal is to encourage more young people – especially African girls - to begin a career in science.

The winners will be presented with their prizes during a ceremony held at the BES Annual Meeting which runs from 18 – 21 December in Edinburgh. The meeting will bring together over 1000 ecologists (in person and online) to discuss the latest advances in ecological research across the whole discipline.

Good News: Two Nutrifish-sponsored PhD students win awards of best oral presentations at ICAFA

Sun, 09/04/2022 - 23:48
Good News: Two Nutrifish-sponsored PhD students win awards of best oral presentations at ICAFA pr Mon, 09/05/2022 - 09:48

ICAFA - International Conference on Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture

Two of the NutriFish-sponsored PhD students, Nakiyende Herbert and Julliet Nafula Ogubi won the awards for the best and second-best oral presentations in the young scientists’ category at the International Conference on Artisanal Fisheries and Aquaculture (ICAFA) held in Jinja, Uganda from 1st-3rd September 2022.  The conference was organized under the theme “Breaking new grounds to recognize and celebrate the contribution of small-scale fisheries towards food security and nutrition”.   

Juliet and Herbert with their awards at the conference

Supported by the International Research Development Centre (IDRC) and the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR) through their joint programme, Cultivate Africa's Future Fund (CultiAF), NutriFish aims to address the nutritional needs of vulnerable groups that cannot afford expensive commercial fish but are in critical need of high quality nutritious diets. The Project is coordinated by Dr Jackson Efitre, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Zoology, Entomology and Fisheries Sciences, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS), Makerere University.

Dr. Jackson Efitre (NuriFish PI) with Herbert Nakiyende

The title for Nakiyende Herbert’s presentation was: “Are small pelagic fisheries a blessing or curse? Understanding fisher community perceptions towards light fishing on Lake Albert, Uganda”.

Light fishing, the technique of catching fish by light attraction was introduced to Lake Albert, Uganda around early 2000s, to target two small pelagic species (SPS), Engraulicypris bredoi (muziri) and Brycinus nurse (ragoogi). The introduction of light fishing coincided with a period when stocks of large-bodied fishes, such as Tilapia spp, Lates niloticus, Bagras bajad, Alestes baremose, and Hydrocynus forskahlii in the Ugandan waters of Lake Albert had started to decline. Although Lake Albert is shared by Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), light fishing is prohibited in DRC waters. This study evaluated socio-ecological consequences of light fishing on the fisheries and lakeside communities of Lake Albert in Uganda, to inform sustainable management. Data was collected in April 2021 from three landing sites (Ntoroko, Kaiso, and Dei), through semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions. Light fishing has transformed the lake’s annual fish catch from < 60,000 tonnes (t) in early 2000s, mainly of large species to about 330,000 t, dominated by SPS (60 – 80%) by 2021. The SPS light fishery currently engages over 30% of total fishing boats and 60% of fishers in the Ugandan waters of the lake. The technique has also led to conflicts with fishers targeting the large-bodied species, the main concerns being: i) excessive light fishing effort; ii) competition for fishing grounds; iii) high by-catch (~10%) dominated by juveniles of the large species; and iv) destruction of passive fishing gears used in the large-bodied species fisheries. To ensure co-existence in the multi-species fishery and continued livelihood benefits (employment, income, and food) of the SPS light fishery, resting and closed periods and light-fishery effort control were proposed by 95.4% of respondents. Detailed scientific investigation of the light fishing methods is recommended, to guide on the proposed closed season and fishing effort controls.

Julliet Nafula Ogubi’s presentation was on: “Spoilage mechanisms and associated drivers in post-harvest loss management in freshwater small pelagic fishes in Africa”.

Small pelagic fishes (SPFs) are steadily being recognized for their contribution to livelihoods, food and nutritional security especially in developing countries. The SPFs are schooling fishes with a total length of 20 cm, preserved mainly by open sun-drying.  Despite the bulk harvests, post-harvest losses associated with spoilage continue to hamper their availability, accessibility and consumption. A review of available literature on similar marine species revealed that spoilage commences immediately after harvest and progresses through three cascading but overlapping processes: autolytic (enzymatic), microbial and chemical reactions causing physical, quality, nutritional and economic losses. Spoilage in SPF is accelerated by i) their large surface to volume ratio; ii) the reliance on fluctuating sun radiation for drying which depends on prevailing weather condition; c) limited drying spaces for large quantities landed.  With regard to magnitude of losses, spoilage-related quality deterioration and nutritional changes in fish are rarely evaluated, hence associated economic value is lacking. The magnitude of losses attributed directly to the spoilage mechanisms have not been determined in freshwater SPFs, yet cost-effective interventions target significant processes. Handling practices, especially stacking and mixing of different fish hauls as drivers of spoilage mechanisms have not also been evaluated.  In addition, the effect of prolonged trips and lack of controlled temperature on-board, are less understood. Therefore, an urgent in-depth assessment of quality and nutritional losses and the associated economic value; the contribution of each spoilage mechanism to the magnitude of losses and the effect of handling practices on the rate of spoilage among freshwater SPFs is needed.

 (https://sf-initiative.org/conference/)

NutriFish team at the ICAFA conference (L-R) Dr. Winnie Nkalubo, Julliet, Herbert, Dr Margaret Masette and Dr Jackson Efitre (NutriFish PI).  

 

Call for Applications

Tue, 08/30/2022 - 09:07
Call for Applications pr Tue, 08/30/2022 - 19:07

ADVERT FOR SHORT COURSES TRAINING IN AQUACULTURE

A. BACKGROUND

The Department of Zoology, Entomology, and Fisheries Sciences, College of Natural Sciences, Makerere University was awarded a contract under the European Union-funded PESCA project implemented by Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF) for the provision of training services. The overall objective of the assignment is to support training that will improve knowledge, skills, and practices that enhance aquaculture production and productivity in Uganda. This will be achieved through the following specific objectives;

1. Support the placement of undergraduate students to work (internships) with fish farmers or other suitable aquaculture value chain (AVC) actors;

2. Conduct inclusive customized short-term training with gender considerations (women, men, youth, people with disabilities) including farmers, Producer Organizations (POs), feed & seed producers, service providers, and other aquaculture stakeholders; and

3. Support MSc. research and training.

The expected outputs from the short-course trainings are:

1. Trainees (farmers, Producer Organizations, feed & seed producers, service providers etc.) with job-demanded competency skills & knowledge

2.Increased engagement of AVC actors in the training of students & review of university curricula;

3. Orientation of tertiary Fisheries and aquaculture training institutions' curricula to practical thematic areas; and

4. Compendium of different modules compiled and shared with partners.

A certificate of attendance will be issued to trainees who successfully complete the training.

B. CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: THE SHORT COURSE TRAINING OPPORTUNITY

Applications are invited for 180 fully funded bursaries for six (6) trainings covering relevant modules specified in (C) below. Each course is expected to be conducted within seven (7) days jointly with the Aquaculture Research and Development Center (ARDC), Kajjansi, National Fisheries Resources Research Institute (NAFIRRI).

C. APPLICATION PROCESS

Application form should be electronically filled and submitted here: https://forms.gle/52JWCEaDH1ADcbVk7. In addition, a signed recommendation from your District Fisheries Officer or Leader of Producer Organisation should also be sent to the Head of Department (eric.sande@mak.ac.ug), with a copy to the Team Leader, Dr. Jackson Efitre (jackson.efitre@mak.ac.ug), and the short courses Coordinators, Juliet Nattabi Kattabi (julliet.nattabi@mak.ac.ug) and Rosemary Nalwanga (rosemary.nalwanga@mak.ac.ug) by the deadline of 30the September, 2022 at 5:00pm. 

Click on the link below to access the advert with details on eligibility and the courses.

PESCA_Short_courses draft advert_FINAL.pdf

 

Call for Applications

Fri, 08/26/2022 - 00:19
Call for Applications pr Fri, 08/26/2022 - 10:19

 MAK-PESCA CALL FOR APPLICATIONS - INTERNSHIP PLACEMENT FOR BSC FISHERIES AND AQUACULTURE STUDENTS

THE EXERCISE IS SUPPORTED BY THE EUROPEAN UNION UNDER PROMOTING ENVIRONMENTALLY SUSTAINABLE COMMERCIAL AQUACULTURE (PESCA) PROJECT

A. BACKGROUND

The Department of Zoology, Entomology, and Fisheries Sciences, College of Natural Sciences, Makerere University, was awarded a contract under the European Union-funded project: Promoting Environmentally Sustainable Commercial Aquaculture (PESCA) for the provision of training services.

The overall objective of the assignment is to support training that will improve knowledge, skills, and practices that enhance aquaculture production and productivity in Uganda. This will be achieved through the following specific objectives: i) Support the placement of undergraduate students to work (internships) with fish farmers or other suitable aquaculture value chain actors; ii) Conduct inclusive customized short-term training with gender considerations (women, men, youth, people with disabilities) including farmers, Producer Organizations (POs), feed & seed producers, service providers, and other aquaculture stakeholders; and iii) Support MSc research and training. The main outcomes of the training and research will include: i) enhanced capacity of Fisheries and aquaculture graduates with skills relevant to aquaculture and fisheries sector needs of the country; ii) fit-for-purpose proactive graduates to support aquaculture; and iii) strengthened partnerships among the industry, research, and academia in the production of quality graduates in the aquaculture value chain, relevant for economic development.

B. CALL FOR APPLICATIONS - SUPPORT THE PLACEMENT OF UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS

Applications are invited for eighteen (18) internship positions for Year Two undergraduate students taking the BSc. Fisheries and Aquaculture Programme under Result Area i) Support the placement of undergraduate students to work (internships) with fish farmers or other suitable aquaculture value chain actors. Each successful applicant is expected to be supported for a period not exceeding 10 weeks. This is an internal advert, open to second year students pursuing BSc in Fisheries and Aquaculture programme at Makerere University. Support for the Placement shall cover transport, stationary, Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and accommodation and supervision costs for candidates conducting their Field Attachment (Internships) training in the academic year 2021/2022.

C. ELIGIBILITY

  1. Applicants MUST be duly registered for the Academic year 2021/2022 at Makerere University and be in their second year of BSc. Fisheries and Aquaculture programme
  2. Females and candidates with disabilities are particularly encouraged to apply
  3. Applicants must provide evidence of normal progress in their training, since joining year one

D. APPLICATION PROCESS

The application package should include:

  1. One-page motivation letter
  2. Curriculum vitae (maximum one page)
  3. Copies of academic documents
  4. Copy of partial transcript
  5. Evidence of registration for the BSc. Fisheries and Aquaculture programme

E. SUBMISSION

Applications should be compiled into a single PDF file and submitted electronically to the Head of Department, Dr. Eric Sande (eric.sande@mak.ac.ug), with a copy to the Team Leader Dr. Jackson Efitre (jackson.efitre@mak.ac.ug), and the Field Attachment (Internships) Coordinator Dr. Robinson Odong (robinson.odong@mak.ac.ug).

The deadline for submitting applications is 9th September 2022, 5:00pm

The advert is attached below.

MaK_PESCA draft Undergraduate_Internships_ZEFs_CoNAS. advert (1).pdf

 

 

Call for Applications

Tue, 08/16/2022 - 00:46
Call for Applications pr Tue, 08/16/2022 - 10:46

***Call for Applications: Intra-Africa Academic & Administrative Staff Mobility

The EU, under the Intra-Africa Academic Mobility Scheme, provided funding to strengthen training and research in African universities (1st November 2017 until 31st October 2023). In this mobility programme five African partner institutions and one EU Technical partner embarked on training of professionals to achieve sustainable fisheries management and aquaculture resources for increased fish production and enhanced food and nutritional security, and hence, improved livelihood and household revenue. The programme is now ready to support training of Academic and Administrative Staff in the various partner institutions namely: Makerere University (Uganda), Rhodes University (South Africa), Mzuzu University (Malawi), Official University of Bukavu (Congo) and University of Eldoret (Kenya). COTRA has opened the call for applications from suitable Academic and Administrative Staff for the available positions indicated in Tables 1 and 2 in the advert before 29th September 2022 (23:59 HRS East African Time).

***Eligibility

To be eligible for support from COTRA, applicants must:

  1. Be a national of an African Union member state and resident in Africa at the time of application
  2. A staff of one of the partner institutions
  3. Must be prepared to move from home country to another country where COTRA has a partner institution
  4. Females and candidates with disabilities are particularly encouraged to apply.
  5. Applicants must submit fully-filled scholarship application forms which are available on the programme website- http://cotraintra-africa.org/year-five-application-intra-africa-academic-mobility-call-scholarships-year-202223
  6. Application form can be accessed directly through - http://cotraintra-africa.org/sites/default/files/downloads/year_five/COTRA%20Application%20for%20Staff%20Mobility%20%281%29.pdf
  7. Applications must be received by host and home institutions through the Country coordinator – see Tables 1 and 2 or find details at http://www.cotraintra-africa.org/contacts with a copy to contraintrafrica@gmail.com by 29th September 2022.

***Email contacts for Makerere University Staff Mobility

Makerere University Academic Staff Mobility Coordinator - Dr Frank Masese, email: f.masese@gmail.com, and Administrative Staff Mobility Coordinator - Mr. Bob Jere, email: jere.b@mzuni.ac.mw

 Note:  Applicants are required to attach a copy of a work plan of the activities for the intended mobility.

Click on the link below for full advert.

COTRA-Call for Staff Mobility Advert (2).pdf

CoNAS Commissions Petroleum Field Research Station in Kibale

Fri, 08/12/2022 - 03:54
CoNAS Commissions Petroleum Field Research Station in Kibale pr Fri, 08/12/2022 - 13:54 The the Warden Research and Ecological Monitoring, Kibale Conservation area, Ms. Dorothy Kirumira together with the project team commissioning the station

Following the discovery of commercial petroleum reserves in Uganda in 2006, Makerere University in 2009 pioneered teaching and research in petroleum programmes. The programmes are offered in the Department of Geology and Petroleum Studies, College of Natural Sciences (CoNAS) at BSc, MSc and PhD levels. As Uganda moves to the next stages of petroleum development, there is need for highly skilled workforce at various stages of exploration, development, production, transportation and refining. However, the progression of teaching and research in these fields has been largely hampered by a serious shortage of sector specific physical infrastructure especially laboratories. There is total lack of specialized equipment to train for upstream, midstream and downstream petroleum operations. According to the Workforce Skills Development Strategy & Plan for the Oil and Gas Sub sector in Uganda (WSDSP), thousands of engineers and managers in the area of control centre operations, as well as geological and petroleum engineering will be required at the development, production processing, transportation and marketing stages in the sector. The educational and training institutions therefore have to be equipped in order to meet current and future petroleum skills needs. 

The newly commissioned Petroleum Field Research Station at MUBFS

Project to identify and set up training infrastructure

Through a project titled, “An assessment to identify research and training laboratory and field equipment and infrastructure for petroleum geosciences and engineering in Higher Educational Institutions of Uganda”, researchers from CoNAS set out to establish a field research station in the Albertine Graben to support practical training in petroleum studies. The Project led by Prof. J.Y.T. Mugisha was supported by Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund (Mak-RIF). Other members on the project included; Prof. Michael Owor, former Head, Department of Geology and Petroleum Studies, and currently Dean, School of Physical Sciences (Co-PI); Dr John Mary Kiberu, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Geology and Petroleum Studies; Mr Willy Kasule and Ms. Suzan Kigozi, technicians in the Department; and Mr. Tonny Mugabi, ICT officer in the Department. The main objective of the project was to identify requisite physical and technological infrastructure for high quality teaching, research and training in various disciplines of the oil and gas sector in Uganda and the East African region.

The Project team with representatives from Mak-RIF after commissioning the station

Commissioning of the Petroleum Field Research Station

As one of the outputs of the project, a Petroleum Field Research Station was set up at Makerere University Biological Field Station (MUBFS) in Kibale. The station was officially commissioned by the Warden Research and Ecological Monitoring, Kibale Conservation area, Ms. Dorothy Kirumira on 6th August 2022.

The Project Principal Investigator, Prof. J.Y.T Mugisha emphasizing the need for training equipment in the oil and gas sector at the project dissemination workshop at MUBFS

Once fully equipped, the station will act as a one-stop centre for research and hands-on training for graduates in the oil and gas sector as well as geosciences. In her remarks, Ms. Kirumira informed participants that MUBFS is a global research station that can generate a lot of income for the University.

The Warden Research and Ecological Monitoring, Kibale Conservation area, Ms. Dorothy Kirumira (L) together with representatives from Mak-RIF, Ms. Evelyne B. Nyachwo (R) and Mr. Aziz Agaba at the project dissemination workshop 

Speaking at the commissioning ceremony, the Principal Investigator, Prof. J.Y.T Mugisha noted that the country has over 400 petroleum and geosciences graduates with hardly any practical skills due to lack of training equipment. He appreciated the Government of Uganda for the support extended to the project through Mak-RIF.

The Co-PI, Prof. Michael Owor presenting about the project

Besides establishing a field research station, the researchers developed a database of petroleum research and teaching resources across the country. This will support relevant skilling and training for development of petroleum resources to contribute to economic development and the SDGs 4 and 7, quality education as well as affordable and clean energy. Through the project, the researchers intend to develop a funding proposal to support the establishment of requisite infrastructure for oil and gas training in the region.

The Head, Department of Geology and Petroleum Studies, CoNAS delivering his remarks at the dissemination workshop

The project dissemination and commissioning of the field research station was graced by the Head, Department of Geology and Petroleum Studies, Dr Arthur Batte, and officials from Mak-RIF, Ms Evelyne B. Nyachwo, Research Support Officer and Mr. Aziz Agaba from the Finance Department.

The Project Engineer, Mr Julius Kwebangana from the University Estates and Works Department

Status of facilities at MUBFS and assessment of geology training sites in the Semliki Basin.

Briefing participants on the status of facilities at MUBFS, the Assistant Domestic Bursar, Mr. Kato Innocent called for renovations on the computer lab, library, shower rooms and improvement of internet connectivity.  

Right-Left - Dr John Mary Kiberu, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Geology and Petroleum Studies, also member on the project, Dr Michael Owor, Dr Arthur Batte, and Eng. Muhumuza Esau

Besides the commissioning ceremony, participants toured facilities at MUBFS, and conducted an assessment of the study sites for geology students in the Semliki basin. The team also toured facilities at the Uganda Technical College- KIchwamba and engaged the Deputy Principal, Mr. Milton K. Mumbogwe on possible areas of collaboration including internship.

Proposed areas for further funding

  1. Exploring alternative field study and research areas across the country;
  2. Camp site ICT materials including remote access of database;
  3. Cataloguing all geoscience resources of academic institutions and industry;
  4. Database up-grading to cater for robust database engine;
  5. Refurbishment of sanitary facilities at MUBFS;
  6. Key field equipment, for example GPS, altimeters;
  7. Living quarters for field classes and researchers.
The Project team touring facilities at MUBFS with guidance from Mr Kato Innocent (3rd L), MUBFS Assistant Domestic Bursar

 

The project team assessing study sites for geology students in the Semliki Basin

 

 

 

 

 

 

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