University of Botswana re-writes history books

The University of Botswana re-wrote history books when, for the first time in its 36-year history, three former students notched up some of the highest honours in a university setup in a single day on October 13, 2018.

The University conferred a Doctor of Laws Honorary Doctorate on President Mokgweetsi Masisi. The conferment was icing on the cake for the 36th University of Botswana Graduation Ceremony which was held at the UB Stadium on October 13, 2018. He becomes the 16th person to receive an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Botswana since its establishment in 1982.

President Masisi received the Honorary Doctorate for his dedicated service to the nation as well as internationally. Among his notable contributions to Batswana was during his service at UNICEF where he worked as Education Project Officer responsible for initiating policy and program reforms for Botswana.

During this period, President Masisi initiated a number of reforms among them developing and implementing education for children of Remote Area Dwellers, focusing on access, retention and improved performance.

In addition, he advocated for pregnant young mothers to continue with their education through the Diphalana Programme. President Masisi was also part of a team of experts that contributed to educational development in Eastern and Southern Africa for UNICEF.

He was also active in community development initiatives through the Village Extension Team. He was also involved in sports, fundraising for development and the Parent Teachers Association in his constituency as a Member of Parliament.

On the same day, the University of Botswana also inaugurated former Bank of Botswana Governor, Ms Linah Mohohlo, was inaugurated as the fifth Chancellor and first woman to hold such a position. Ms Mohohlo also became the third none head of state Chancellor.

Ms Mohohlo is an experienced leader, having served in different capacities locally and internationally. Further, the statement says Ms Mohohlo has a firm and grounded understanding of the University which she served she served in various capacities over the years and notably the UB Foundation.

Following Ms Mohohlo’s inauguration, next on the podium was Professor David Norris who was inaugurated as the sixth Vice Chancellor of the University of Botswana. Professor Norris is a renowned scholar who has published widely in reputable journals.

His notable strengths are in Innovative Teaching and Learning; Curriculum Development and Review; Research Development and Innovation; and Higher Education Administration and Management; Change Management, Process Management and Strategic Leadership; with a notable record in research collaboration and research fundraising.

Meanwhile, the day, characterised by pomp and fanfare, wrapped up with the Chancellor, Ms Mohohlo, conferring degrees and diplomas on 2 273 graduands. The number comprised 16 PhDs, five Mphil, 221 Masters Degrees, 1 702 Degrees, 189 Post Graduate Diplomas and 140 Diplomas.

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