Makerere University virtual graduation stirs mixed reactions

Makerere University virtual graduation stirs mixed reactions
Female graduands of Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery at Makerere University during the 70th graduation ceremony at Makerere

Kampala, Uganda | URN | A cross-section of Makerere University students have expressed reactions to next week’s first-ever virtual graduation ceremony.

The 71st graduation ceremony will take place from Monday May 17-21. Previously, graduation ceremonies were held at freedom square on the campus. Scenes of students celebrating with their parents were a common sight.

However, this year’s graduation will be conducted virtually to observe the standard operating procedures meant to prevent the spread of COVID-19. However, only PhD graduands will be expected to be present at Freedom Square.

The ceremony will be broadcast live on television and streamed on the University’s online social media platforms including Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.

Although the graduands agree that holding a physical graduation is a threat to their health, the virtual ceremony has cut short their expectations.

Nankya Zena, who will graduate with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Commerce from Makerere University Business School says that it is sad that her parents and friends will not be present to celebrate her success. Zena says that her friends and relatives had planned to accompany her to the ceremony.

Nakiggude Jamila pursuing a Bachelor in Business Administration notes that it is unfortunate that the ceremony will be conducted virtually. She says that she will miss the physical graduation because it would have been the last time to meet her former classmates.

Read Also: Saving culture takes root among university students

Alex Arinaitwe from the School of Psychology says that the virtual graduation has saved him the costs of acquiring a graduation gown.

“Right now I find acquiring a gown a luxury. It wouldn’t be necessary for me to wear it at home. Let me just wait for my transcript,” he says.

Following the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, several universities have held virtual graduation ceremonies. Some of the universities include Uganda Christian University, Islamic University in Uganda and Busitema University among others.