Your Excellency Chancellor; Third Graduation Ceremony of NM-AIST.

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1 SPEECH BY THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COUNCIL, HON. PROF. DAVID HOMELI MWAKYUSA (MP), ON THE OCASSION OF THE THIRD GRADUATION CEREMONY OF THE NELSON MANDELA AFRICAN INSTITUTION OF SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY, TENGERU CAMPUS, ARUSHA ON THURSDAY, 21 ST APRIL, 2016 The Chancellor of NM-AIST and Former Vice President of the United Republic of Tanzania, Your Excellency, Dr. Mohamed Gharib Bilal; The Minister of Education, Science, Technology and Vocational Training, Hon. Prof. Joyce Ndalichako; Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology; Regional Commissioner of Arusha Region, Hon. Daud Felix Ntibenda; Member of Parliament for Arumeru East, Hon. Joshua Nassari (MP); The Director General of COSTECH, Dr. Hassan Mshinda; Members of NM-AIST Council; Members of the Senate; Government Officials and Heads of Public and Private Organizations; Religious Leaders; Vice Chancellors, Rectors, Principals and Managers of Tertiary and Research Institutions; Staff and Students of NM-AIST; Graduands; Members of the Press; Distinguished Guests; Ladies and Gentlemen. 1

2 Your Excellency Chancellor; Firstly, on behalf of the Governing Council, Management, staff, students and the entire NM-AIST community, I wish to thank the Almighty God for according us life and good health and thereby enabling us to be part of the today s celebrations. Secondly, I also take this opportunity to humbly thank you and other Government authorities for having trust in me and appointing me again to serve as the Chairman of the 2 nd Governing Council of this Institution. I also thank other authorities that by virtue of the provision of the NM-AIST Charter of 2013 have appointed members to represent various stakeholders groups in the Council of NM-AIST. Some of the members were in the 1 st Governing Council but some of them are new and have joined us to provide an important oversight role over this Institution especially on policy and governance matters. I was expecting that all Members of the Council would be present at this graduation event but due to other important commitments, they have not been able to join us. I wish to introduce Members of the Council who are here with me, including Prof. Julie Makani from MUHAS; Mr. Johnson Rugoye, representing the NM-AIST Worker s Union and Mr. Adeline Mtunya, a member representing the NM-AIST s Students Community. I thank them all for setting aside time to witness this important event in the history of our Institution. After introducing members of the Council, I now, take this opportunity to humbly welcome you Hon. Chancellor to the Third Graduation Ceremony of NM-AIST. I thank you most sincerely 2

3 for setting aside time to grace this event despite of your very tight schedule and other national commitments. I also take this opportunity to welcome all our invited guests, parents, friends, spouses, neighbouring communities and all stakeholders of NM-AIST to this graduation ceremony. The Council and the entire NM-AIST family highly acknowledge the support that you are extending to this Institution in various ways. The graduation ceremony is a very important event in the life of graduands, parents, friends and the NM-AIST community at large because, together, we are witnessing and celebrating the fruits of our collective investment in different ways towards the success of our graduands. It is with extraordinary delight, that I welcome you all to another precious moment in the lives of our graduands, parents, friends and our Institution. Your Excellency the Chancellor; Graduations are the most sacred events in the life of higher learning institutions; it is the day set aside to award academic qualifications, PhDs, and Master s (for our case) to the deserving graduands. It is a festival of excellence at which talents, hard work and distinction are acknowledged and rewarded. Also, the graduation ceremony is a period of institutional self-reflection and assessment on our efficiency and effectiveness in academic delivery, research and innovation as well as the environment under which all these operations are undertaken. The commitment of the Management of the Institution, academic and other staff is what has enabled us to gather here and, we all witness the output of their hard work and efforts. I would like to 3

4 acknowledge all those who in one way of the other have contribute to this success. Your Excellency Chancellor; On 18 th December 2014, we held the 2 nd Graduation ceremony for conferring Master s and PhD degrees to graduands. It was a very special occasion because, among those who were conferred degrees was His Excellency, Dr. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete, Former President of the 4 th Phase Government of United Republic of Tanzania who was conferred a Honorary Doctorate (PhD honoris causa). Today, we are gathered here to witness the graduation of the 2 nd Cohort of 19 PhD graduands who commenced studies in 2012 and 3 rd Cohort of 48 Master s graduands who commenced studies in Graduands have specialized in various fields of Science, Engineering and Technology as will be pronounced later. As an institution, we are very proud of this success because it demonstrates that the investment that was made by the Government to establish this Institution is truly, paying dividends. The number of graduands would have been more if research funds were available on time. Delays in disbursement of funds by the Government delayed completion of research projects by some of the students. However, we expect that remaining students will complete their works within 3 to 6 months. I wish to take this opportunity to commend the Management and Staff for their concerted efforts that have made it possible for these students to accomplish their studies. 4

5 I wish to assure you all that the graduands who will be conferred degrees here today have been properly transformed into experts in their respective fields of specialization. The NM-AIST fraternity has prepared the graduands very well by offering them a wholesome learning experience that has nurtured and sharpened their skills. The NM-AIST Governing Council is confident that, as we release our products to the society and industry, they have what it takes to fit and succeed in their different endeavours. Our graduands, are well-equipped to join Tanzanian workforce and work together with other stakeholders, apply their knowledge in order to address challenges facing the Society and Industry and contribute towards scientific, technological and industrial revolution of our country, in line with the motto of the President of the United Republic of Tanzania, Dr. John Pombe Joseph Magufuli, of HAPA KAZI TU. It is our hope that our graduates will become a true catalyst for the industrial transformation in our country. I wish to congratulate all the graduands for the very hard work that has led to this success. Your Excellency Chancellor; In order to strengthen our capacity and to acquire experience in various areas, our Institution has established links and collaborations with various institutions in different parts of the world including institutions in the USA, United Kingdom, Canada, Germany, Sweden, China, Korea, Denmark, Italia, Holland, Finland, Belgium, Israel and India. We also have collaboration with various institutions within the country and in other parts of Africa like the East African Community (EAC), Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) and many others. 5

6 Your Excellency Chancellor; The objectives of the Governing Council of this Institution are driven by the motto of our Institution, that is, Academia for Society and Industry. Through research and innovation as key pillars of its operations, the Institution is striving to contribute towards addressing challenges facing the society and industry in the country and the region at large through the application of science, engineering and technology. Since its establishment, the Institution has produced competent graduates that are competitive in the global job market through their innovative skills. Also our graduates have been trained to provide professional services for addressing industrial and business challenges including providing policy recommendations. Also, the Institution is engaging with various partners, including the Government to ensure that the number of brilliant students studying at this Institution increased so that by 2027 we have at least 1000 graduates per year, 75% of which are able to establish their own businesses. Your Excellence Chancellor; Cognizant of the national requirements in general, the Institution has continued to develop administrative instruments by preparing various policies including Research and Innovation Policy, Human Resources Management Policy, Staff Training and Development Policy, Information and Communication Technology Policy, Library Policy and others. Your Excellency Chancellor; I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Government of the United Republic of Tanzania through its various ministries for 6

7 the continued support to this Institution. In particular, I would like to thank the 4 th Phase Government led by His Excellency Dr. Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete and assisted by yourself. It is during your tenure that this Institution started offering academic programmes at Master s and PhD levels and today, we are celebrating the results of your very abled leadership. It is our hope that the 5 th Phase Government under the leadership of His Excellency, Dr. John Pombe Magufuli will continue to support this Institution so that the purpose of its establishment is realized, so that the Institution, indeed, become a well-known centre for academic, research and innovation excellence. This Institution has a great potential of contributing to addressing the contemporary challenges facing the society and industry, and producing products and services to the society, in addition to creating more jobs for the youth in this county and the entire Sub-Saharan region. Your Excellency Chancellor, Ladies and Gentlemen Tanzania, and Arusha in particular, is hosting this regional centre of excellence in Science, Engineering, Technology and Innovation. Given its location in Arusha and its mandate as a regional Institution of Science, Engineering and Technology, we are well positioned to serve as a mill that generates evidence-based policy recommendations to national governments, regional and continental institutions such as East African Community, SADC and even the African Union. I will be proud during my tenure of office as Chairman of this Council to see the rainbow vision of Nelson Mandela bearing fruits through the academic, research and innovation works undertaken by this Institution for the 7

8 development of our nation, the African continent and the world at large. Dear Graduands; I would like to join hands with relatives, friends, lecturers and all staff of NM-AIST to congratulate all graduands for this academic achievement. It is an undeniable fact your achievement has been a result of your hard work, supported with other stakeholders. The fact of life is that you will always encounter challenges. Be prepared to work in different types of environment, good and challenging and God will always give you a good way out if you are determined to conquer the challenges. The challenges that you have faced in the course of your studies here should be a source of your inspiration to perform better and better. And, always strive to transform challenges into opportunities rather than constraints. It is our hope that the hard work and dedication that you demonstrated while at this Institution will be rewarded with fruitful and meaningful careers when you leave this Institution. We also pray that the fruits of your studies shall be rewarding to yourselves, and your families; that you shall put your knowledge at the service of Society and Industry; embracing our motto Academia for Society and Industry and that your invaluable contributions to this country shall transform Tanzania into a prosperous nation. Your Excellency Chancellor; Before I conclude my speech, allow me to commend the Management, Graduation Committee and staff for organizing this 8

9 important event. It required a lot of planning and attention to details by very dedicated members of staff under the guidance of the Management. On behalf of the Council and the congregation gathered here, I thank them very much for the remarkable work done and we hope that more improvements will be made in future events. Your Excellency Chancellor, once again, I thank you for availing time to grace this graduation, and I also thank all people who joined us in this important occasion. I THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR ATTENTION! 9

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