Science Education to
Great Lakes Regional College
In Kanungu District, there are only 3 doctors for 250,000 people. (By comparison, Ann Arbor, Michigan, with a similar population, has 284 family practitioners alone.) You cannot train people to work in the medical profession unless they have some background in science. There are very few trained science teachers in Kanungu district and very few students graduating with any scientific knowledge. So, after 2 years of consultation with community and academic leaders, it was decided that the initial goal of SEED should be to train science teachers for local schools ……..
……. and so the SEED Institute was born!
What is the SEED Institute?
The SEED Institute will provide training for elementary and secondary school science teachers. These teachers will find employment in schools within the district and beyond and, as the next generation receives science instruction, the potential is created for students to pursue careers in medicine, public health, engineering and other branches of science, thereby driving development of the whole region.
Pedagogical skills will be taught right alongside the teaching of science, so that when the newly-trained teachers are hired, they will know not only how to teach their subjects but will also be innovative in teaching science in schools with little to no equipment or labs.
We are proud to announce that the SEED Institute was officially opened in August of this year by the Prime Minister of Uganda, Dr Ruhakana Rugunda! Here he is, cutting the ribbon.
L TO R: Dr. Paul Schendel Jessica Schendel, Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda (Prime Minister), Dr. George Tumwesigye (Vice Chancellor), Dr. Hamlet Kabushenga (Founding Chancellor)
Great efforts were made by all the local builders and craftsmen to get the building ready for the big day - the new sign was mounted, labs were set up, walkways were cleared and the building was cleaned from top to toe. This is how it looks now on the outside ……
….. and on the inside …..
The SEED Institute has already contributed to the economic development of the region by hiring local builders, using local materials, such as bricks and wood, and by ordering windows, doors and lab furniture from the College workshop.
BUT THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING ……..
Great Lakes Regional College currently awards diplomas and certificates. We have just received the great news from the National Council for Higher Education that they have been awarded accreditation as a University, which will allow them to grant degrees. Now that this accreditation has been secured, the SEED Institute can admit its first cohort of students to study SCIENCE EDUCATION.
Meanwhile, work continues in equipping the labs and the e-library. We are requesting gifts from scientific and technical companies and will purchase other items with donated funds. For ways to support this effort, please go to our Current Needs page.
At the same time, Patrick and his staff at the SEED Institute are working on hiring faculty and recruiting good local students for the program. Access to all with the requisite qualifications is a challenge in this community of subsistence farmers. Our solution is to establish a student loan fund, the Future Teacher Fund ~ please see further info on our Current Needs page.