Makerere University students have continued to compete for the few resources at the institution and students doing practical courses are heavily affected.
Makerere University is the oldest and most prestigious University in Uganda and admits over 21,000 students every year. The big number of students admitted have to join the rest of the students in competing for resources which include, lecture rooms, computer laboratories, scholastic equipment among others.
Students at the College of Humanities and Social Sciences have taken a portion in the frustration over inadequacy materials to serve all the students.
The Bachelors of Journalism and Communication is one of the most prestigious courses at the University that admits few students, however with approximately 120 students that the department admits every year, frustration over the access of resources is evident.
In the NORHED Multimedia computer laboratory owned by the department, there are only 32 computers and only 31 of these function. These few computers are supposed to serve over 600 students who do the course at the department. Being a practical course, equipment like cameras, recorders, tripod stands among others are required. however, with not more than 10 functioning cameras all students at the department have to get their assignments done in time.
David Magere a student of journalism and communication at the institution says that there are very few camera at the department and that once one borrows a camera they are expected to return it that day so that others can also use it. He adds on that this does not give him enough time to finish up his work because he is always in a rush.
“The chairs are not even enough” exclaimed Moses Balok a second year journalism student. He adds on that students have to stand as class goes on. He calls upon the university authorities to always visit different departments in the institution and see the state in which they are . “With this they will be aware of the hardship we go through” Balok says.
students of Journalism and Communication keep praying and hoping that one day their the Campus FM frequency that was sold to Salt FM be brought back one day to improve the student’s practical skills in radio production.
According to the Head of Department of Journalism and Communication Dr. William Tayeebwa, the Department is finding a way forward to improve its student’s practical skills by engaging into talks to partner with UBC Television to allocate time specifically for journalism students.
The school of statistics at the at the university is no different. With over 1000 students, students gave up on using the school computer laboratory because of its functioning computers.
Sharon Nantege a second year student doing business statistics,says that their lecturers reached an extent of telling them to carry their own computers to manage practical classes. But how then do those who do not have laptops manage?
There are other various departments at the University with inadequate equipment to facilitate students. In the end, students end up not getting quality skills for the courses they applied for which affects their career for a lifetime.
Musumbya David Kigundu
Adong Mary Gold