Prof Kirumira becomes first black man to head Stellenbosch Institute

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Prof Kirumira

The College of Humanities and Social Sciences last evening 19th December 2018 recognized and bid farewell to Prof. Edward K. Kirumira at a colourful ceremony held in St. Augustine Students’ Centre.

At the same occasion, the College recognized members of staff that have retired from University service.

Prof. Kirumira has been the substantive Principal of CHUSS since 2013 and has served Makerere University in various capacities for the last 37 years.

He will be leaving Makerere in January 2019 following his appointment as Director of the prestigious Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study (STIAS).

STIAS, the Stellenbosch Institute for Advanced Study is a high-level research institute dedicated to innovative thinking and the production of new knowledge based in South Africa.

He will succeed Professor Hendrik Geyer who completes his final term as STIAS Director at the end of 2018. Prof. Kirumira will be the first black African to Head STIAS.

According to Desmond Smith, Chair of the STIAS Board of Directors, the Selection Committee was impressed by Prof. Kirumira’s vision for STIAS to further enhance the quality of the core research programme, to vigorously expand the Iso Lomso programme focused on the next generation of African scholars and leaders and to make STIAS an academic and intellectual hub in service of the continent and research globally.

“We warmly welcome him to the STIAS family. He has the full support of the Board of Directors and we look forward to the next phase of the Institute’s growth under his leadership.”

In an interview following his appointment, Prof. Kirumira said: “It’s scary but a great privilege to hold this position. I want to bring to STIAS a passion for scholarship but also a passion for situating that scholarship within an institutional structure. I come from a position of building higher education institutional capacity from both an academic and administration view. If you don’t have good governance it’s difficult for scholarship to flourish.”

Speaking at his farewell party, Prof. Kirumira appreciated everybody for the support rendered to him during his time at Makerere University:

“I would like to appreciate my immediate supervisor, the Vice Chancellor, Prof. Barnabas Nawangwe and his predecessor, Prof. John Ddumba Ssentamu for the support they provided at different levels. I also thank the Chancellor, Prof. Ezra Suruma who appointed me, the Chairman Council, Eng. Dr. Charles Wana Etyem and all members of Council and Management for the explicit and implicit support accorded to me.”

Prof. Kirumira specifically recognized his family for the moral and physical support.

He also recognized members of staff at CHUSS for the cordial working relationship. “I say without hesitation that it has been a great pleasure to serve The Deputy VC in charge of Academic Affairs, Dr Umar Kakumba hands over a plaque to Prof. Kirumira

The Deputy VC in charge of Academic Affairs, Dr Umar Kakumba hands over a plaque to Prof. Kirumira as the first substantive Principal of CHUSS and to work with colleagues; the Deputy Principal, Deans, Heads of Department, Academic, Administrative and Support staff to move the College to the level where it has a fully- fledged cohort PhD programme now boasting of 27 registered PhD students from Uganda and the rest of Africa. This is in addition to the MISR PhD programme and the individual PhD students,” he noted.

During his tenure as Principal of CHUSS, Prof. Kirumira has registered a number of achievements.

28 members of staff have been promoted from Senior Lecturer to Professorial rank, 17 from Lecturer to Senior Lecturer and 43 from Assistant Lecturer to Lecturer position.

Prof. Kirumira has extensively fundraised for the College and the University.

CHUSS is now a recipient of several training and research grants and its grant portfolio now exceeds US$20 million.

Several memoranda of understanding have been signed and have greatly boosted institutionalization and networking.

Under Prof. Kirumira’s leadership, the College witnessed the establishment of the Confucius Institute, the AfriChild Centre, the Julius Nyerere Leadership Centre and the E.A Centre for Research in Social Work.

Prof. Kirumira appealed to his successors to extend the debate of human resource development beyond money and provide opportunities for staff to grow.

He also appealed to them to work towards establishing Centres of Excellence, Chairs and Thematic Research groups. He pledged to continue supporting the College to grow to greater heights.

About Prof. Kirumira

Prof. Edward K. Kirumira is Professor of Sociology and outgoing Principal of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences at Makerere University in Uganda, a position he has held for five years.

Before that he was the Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences for eight years.

He studied at the Universities of Makerere and Exeter, and the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

He obtained his PhD in Sociology from Copenhagen University in collaboration with Harvard University. He specialized in population and reproductive health, and has done extensive interdisciplinary research on HIV/AIDS, emergent diseases and international health issues, health-seeking behaviour, poverty and rural-development studies. He has published widely in local and international scholarly journals.

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