Monday March 2nd, 2020- Kampala; Silver Bullet, a leading agency that brings together multi sectoral partners who support the expansion of engineering capacity, together with Unicaf, has today announced that it will reward fifteen Science, Technology, Engineering and Innovation (STEI) university students with free access to online professional development courses this year, under its Student Development Programme (SDP).
The fifteen students will be selected from three different universities: Makerere University, Kyambogo University, and Ndejje University, using specific criteria scrutinized by a panel of five judges.
According to Ms. Maryanne Karamagi, Silver Bullet’s Executive Officer, the purpose of this initiative is to inspire, up-scale and up-skill students in Science, Innovation, Engineering and Technology across the country, with the aim of bringing their ideas to life, and thus contributing to the country’s sustainable development goals. Speaking at the launch ceremony of the 2020 Student Development Programme (SDP) in Kampala, Karamagi stated:
“This year the SDP aims at balancing the solution scale by offering non-technical, value-added skills to STEI students. Many of the skills required in the 21st century workplaces are associated with deeper learning and with the mastering of soft skills. It is hard for STEI personnel to integrate into the workplace, when only a handful of them are equipped to ease into non-STEI teams, and this is an impediment. If we want our technologists to innovate for development, we need to equip them with the right skills to become t-thinkers (people who are able to think in and from various professional dimension). This is why we have chosen competence-based courses for professional development for the SDP 2020.”
In 2018, Silver Bullet together with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), as the main sponsor, and Fundi Bots conducted a six-week long Student Development Programme, which attracted 40 students from various universities. This year, the programme will be supported by Unicaf and Silver Bullet. Unicaf is a global educational organisation that delivers affordable, flexible, accessible and credible online Bachelor, Master’s, and Doctoral degrees, as well as Professional Development Courses, offered from partner universities in the UK, the USA and Africa.
Speaking on behalf of Unicaf, Ms. Dorothy Mukimba, Senior Marketing Manager in Uganda, said:
“Science and technology play a vital role in the growth of any economy in the world and we, as a country, cannot afford to ignore it any longer. It’s a key factor of growth in all aspects of the economy, be it agriculture, real estate, tourism and so on, so we need to ensure that we have a reliable pool of talent available, who can provide solutions to the challenges arising in all of these sectors, in the most affordable way. This can only be achieved by equipping interested youths with the right knowledge and skills. As Unicaf, we are therefore pleased to offer fifteen Professional Development Courses to fifteen outstanding Engineering students, through the Unicaf Scholarship Programme. We believe that these courses provide lifelong essential skills, which are not only beneficial in the short term, to ease graduates’ adjustment from university to the workplace, but also to ensure long term business growth. We are excited to be part of the Silver Bullet SDP initiative and can’t wait to see how this impacts the country and the region over the next couple of years.”
The 2020 Student Development Programme will run from the 9th of March 2020 to the 10th of April 2020. The three courses offered, Leadership Skills, Professional Communication and Psychology of the Workplace, will be delivered fully online by Unicaf and participants will study at no cost.
Silver Bullet is a Ugandan not-for-profit organisation that educates and inspires youth to follow careers in Science and Engineering; empowers early career graduates and budding innovators to capably join the work force; and works with professionals to nurture the next generation of engineering and computing professionals.
Silver Bullet employs interactive and engaging educational activities to introduce and demonstrate the principles and applications of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Math (STEAM) to young learners, provides unique training opportunities for career professionals and budding innovators, and enables practicing professionals to maintain proficiency in relevant fields