Knowledge for sustainable excellence!
In Kasese, a new university is almost been created by enthusiastic and courageous people, who appointed me as their Vice Chancellor in late December, 2014. The idea came to their mind following on from 22 years spent in developing a primary school, a secondary school and a vocational college that have been doing pretty well; Celak Vocational College is a reference in Kasese for hospitality and languages. Strongly-rooted among the Bakonzo people, the University to be created will be the first indigenous university in Kasese, and the second in the Rwenzori region after MMU (Mountains of the Moon University in Fort Portal, at 70km from Kasese). Hundreds of prospective students have been waiting for this new University to open. However, funding is missing for this new initiative, and this is the reason why I decided to help them on a volunteer basis.
The existing Celak Vocational College and the future Rwenzori Destiny University will be two separate bodies, at least in a first stage. We will keep the label “Rwenzori Destiny University” for our students effectively registered to our university Bachelors; it will represent another incentive for them. The crucial lacking of good level-academics in the staff stresses the importance of keeping the new structure (Rwenzori Destiny University) independently from the existing Celak Vocational College, with distinct buildings and accounts and a specific staff (on a volunteer basis in the first year). We will avoid disorganizing the existing Vocational College – as it has been successful and appreciated by the local communities – and keep in mind that both structures should collaborate but act as independent bodies.
The final name will be Rwenzori Destiny University. This brings in some sustainability through the word Kalayirire (Destiny or predestined). Member said kalayirire is a good word but many people don’t know the actual meaning of that word in Lhukonzo and tend to misuse it and associate it with negative words of malediction e.g erilahirira which is connected with cursing. So thought if we used the English equivalent (Destiny or predestined), then it will be clear to those who will read it. The general objective of the University is to change the living condition of communities living in the area, meaning the Rwenzori.
Rwenzori Destiny University project is a non-profit making, community-based initiative, but it is also expected to be international, model with a spirit of sustainability and of the people of the region where it is situated.
As the name has been agreed upon, we shall have our project registered with both the registrar of companies and the NGO board in Kampala, for our future privileges and rights, open up a bank account in the name of our University and make necessary changes in our documentation.
The motto of the University is
Knowledge for sustainable excellence.
The University logo bears a genet (akasimba in lhukonzo), as it is a clever and fast animal very well represented in the Bakonzo’s traditional stories; it is holding a book, symbol of knowledge, bearing our motto in English and in Lhukonzo [not sure there is space enough for French]. The Mountains of the Moon (three mountains), the sun (weather) and a river coming from the mountains (source of the Nile, fertility) are also present in the logo. Underneath is the name of the University. The idea came to create a miniature version which could be used for short-size prints.
Astrid de Hontheim,
Promotional items will be printed with the logo and the name of the institution: voucher books, receipt books, office stamps, headed paper, notebooks, pens, mugs, T-shirts, business cards.
Legend of the picture: The Vice Chancellor with His Majesty Omusinga Rwenzururu, Prime Minister Enoch Muhindo and Minister for Congo Eri Thembo Nyakango