Barya: I’ll Make UTAMU the Massachusetts Of Africa


malady geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science, M.Sc. in Computer Science, M.Sc. (Mathematics)-Coursework, Post Graduate Diploma in Analysing Linear Programming Models and B.Sc. (Hons) among other qualifications.

Header advertisement

He previously served at Makerere University as Vice Chancellor, Dean of the Faculty of Computing and IT and Director of the Institute of Computer Science.

At his young age, Baryamureeba, a distinguished academic, researcher, leader and manager, has won several awards both at National and International levels.

Some of his most recent awards include the golden jubilee award from Uganda’s President Museveni, Award for Outstanding Contribution to Education at the Africa-India Partnership Summit Le Matinal, Educational Excellence Awards held in Mauritius and the ‘Top ICT Academic’ Award in Africa.

Others are the ‘TWAS-ROSSA award’ for Building Scientific Institutions for the African Region and the ‘Amity Global Academic Excellence Award’.

Prof. Baryamureeba was also included in the ‘Top 100 Professionals’ by the International Biographical Centre in recognition of his significant contribution in the area of ICT.

Thanks to technology, we caught up with Prof. Baryamureeba for an interview even when he was in Kinshasha, DRC, where he was attending the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Policy Organs Meeting.

Baryamureeba happens to be the Chairperson of the COMESA Innovations Committee.

Below is the full interview:

QN: You have achieved so much at such a tender age; what is your driving force?

The desire to excel and leave an indelible mark in all positions I have held. Another thing that drives me is the desire to offer selfless service for the betterment of mankind.

QN: You have quite a big task as a Vice Chancellor of a fast growing University like UTAMU; how do you intend to live up to the challenge?

The time any institution ceases to have challenges is the moment it stops to innovate and see opportunities. On the issue of staff retention, UTAMU has put in place favourable staff packages.

On the issue of attracting PhD holders, this has been addressed through provision of an all round academic environment including research environment.

UTAMU in collaboration with Mbarara University is engaged in training the next generation of PhD holders.

UTAMU has an aggressive research agenda and is currently seeking partnerships with governments, multinational companies and organizations, research institutions and agencies to raise funds for research and increase the research output from UTAMU.

UTAMU has put in place the right staff for the right positions and challenges can be handled whenever they arise.

QN: Where do you see UTAMU in the next five years?

In the next three years, UTAMU shall be the best University in Uganda in the area of Technology and Management (T&M).

In the next five years, UTAMU shall be the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) of Africa. As a result it shall be one stop centre for T&M training, research and innovation.

QN: You are one of the few Vice Chancellors in Uganda who participates in teaching and supervising of students. In fact UTAMU is the only university in Uganda where high profile professors like you engage in these activities especially at undergraduate level. Why?

First of all, as Professor I have to remain up to date through teaching and undertaking research and innovation.

Secondly, the best Professors need to give priority to UTAMU students especially the 1st year students so that they get grounded right from the start.

Any serious institutions has to deploy their best staff to teach students early enough in their career.

So I enjoy mentoring young people and also sharing with them my life experiences.

Professors are better placed to orientate students who are fresh from high school in discipline specific matters to guide their career paths.

QN: There is no doubt that the UTAMU graduate will be a unique breed. How will you ensure that this breed does not suffer from unemployment just like other graduates today?

By the time UTAMU students graduate, many of them will be already having their own ongoing incubation projects / business which they can continue with after University.

But secondly and most importantly, anyone who graduates from UTAMU must have skills to enable this person perform in the world of work but also be able to run his / her business if need be.

QN: Before Joining UTAMU as Vice Chancellor, you were Vice Chancellor of Makerere University. What do consider your best moment at Makerere University?

The best moment at Makerere University was on 6th September 2012 when I handed over the office of the Vice Chancellor to Prof. John Ddumba Sentamu.

That marked the climax of my service to Makerere University.

QN: What do you consider your turning moment in life?

7th September 2012 was my turning point. This is day when my colleagues and I announced the opening of UTAMU.

Today, UTAMU employs more than 100 Ugandans.

Like I have already mentioned, UTAMU will enable me achieve what I could not achieve at Makerere University. I am optimistic that UTAMU will be the MIT of Africa in the next five years.

QN: Where do you see yourself in the next five years?

Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand; Proverbs 19:21. So I will wait unto the Lord to guide and direct me.

As of now, I am whole heartedly focused on serving UTAMU for the next five years.

QN: What’s your philosophy in life?

My philosophy in life is to empower those around me and to offer service above self for the good of mankind.

QN: What has enabled you to be successful in the different positions you have held?

Several factors have contributed but key among them include: being able to network, building competent teams, delegation, hard work, living in the present and never quitting any responsibility.


Header advertisement
To Top