Unicaf University Zambia celebrated on the 26th of November 2021 the graduation of the second cohort of Master’s students, in a virtual ceremony, observing all Covid-19 safety guidelines.
463 students from 62 different countries successfully completed their degree programmes online, without any disruptions caused by pandemic restrictions. They were awarded the following degree titles: Master in Education, Master of Laws (LLM), Master of Business Administration, Master of Science in Healthcare Management, Master of Science in Managerial Psychology, Master of Science in Web Design and Development.
The guest of honour, Honourable Felix Mutati, Minister of Technology and Science, emphasised in his speech the power of Education to transform the educator, the learner and the social environment, which is crucial to development. The Minister said that the future of the world is grounded in technology and expressed his pleasure that the operations of Unicaf University Zambia were not disrupted by Covid-19, because of its online delivery model. ‘Unicaf University’, he stated, ‘has demonstrated that it is poised to greatly contribute to the digital transformation of Zambia, through the adoption and application of science, technology, and innovation.’
The Chancellor of Unicaf University Zambia, Professor Mpazi Sinjela, congratulated the graduates and underlined the importance of lifelong learning: ‘In order for us all to have the most meaningful impact on our environment, the continued pursuit of knowledge is imperative… The solutions to national and global problems are to be discovered in your continuous study, research and application of the knowledge you acquire.’
Addressing the graduates and their families, the Vice Chancellor Dr. Christine Phiri Mushibwe likened education to a river, which needs a constant supply of fresh water to avoid stagnation, and added: ‘Unicaf University predicted the change of the wind and embraced technology to change the way of teaching and learning long before the pandemic. Whilst others are still adopting and adapting to the new situation, forced into change by the 4th Industrial Revolution and the pandemic, ours is a well-established course, paved by choice and not just necessity.’
The Vice Chancellor Federal Dr. Kevin Andrews congratulated the new graduates and announced that Unicaf University at the Federal level signed the UN Sustainable Development Goals Accord, selecting to focus on 5 important elements, namely the on-going provision of quality education, fostering decent work opportunities and economic growth, and working to reduce inequalities. Dr. Andrews said that the University was a finalist in the UN-sponsored Green Gown International Awards as ‘Sustainability Institution of the Year 2021’and has gained membership of the Advance HE, the single agency of the Higher Education sector for the promotion of equality, diversity, excellence in teaching and learning, and best practice in University leadership and governance. Unicaf University is the only African University member of Advance HE, which is a demonstrable seal of quality.
The inspirational speaker, renowned Professor of Law, author and thought leader Kenneth K. Mwenda, urged the graduates to keep learning throughout their lives and reminded them to use the tools they have acquired through education wherever they go and in whatever they do, because education can open doors and change lives.
Representatives of Zambian graduating students Chala Tumelo and of international graduating students Solomon Okhifoh expressed gratitude to the University’s academics and staff for the support and guidance and promised, as graduates of Unicaf University Zambia, to carry the flag high, with pride and honour.
Graduates and their families in Zambia watched the ceremony on ZNBC TV, while international graduates followed the proceedings through social media. Around fifty local graduates were invited to the University’s state-of-the-art campus in Lusaka to watch the televised transmission of the ceremony; after the event they met with members of the press and spoke enthusiastically about their personal learning journey at Unicaf University.