Ankole Western Institute of Science and Technology (AWIST) and Ankole Western University Project (AWUP)is situated on Kabwohe hill, 32km along Mbarara – Fort Portal road, Kabwohe - Itendero Town Council, Sheema District of Greater Bushenyi in South Western region of Uganda.
The genesis of this Institute and University Project can be traced as far back as the 1980’s. The first Bishop of West Ankole Diocese, Rt. Rev. Yoramu K. Bamunoba together with other stake holders of the area like the Late Wilson Kansiime Ruhanga started seven secondary schools in anticipation that they would serve as a good foundation for Tertiary Institutions in Uganda and later an Institute and University respectively in the region.In September 2002, the then Bishop of West Ankole Diocese, The Rt.Rev.William K. Magambo, on recommendation of the Diocesan Board of Education, appointed a steering committee headed by Prof. Ephraim Kamuntu to spear head the project in 2003 and carry out a feasibility study about the viability of establishing a University. The Committee members were Hon.Richard Nduhura, Hon. Dr. Elioda Tumwesigye, Prof. Emmanuel Karoro, Hon. Jovah Kamateeka and Mrs. Naoume Ntebekaine Kibaaju. The Committee was assisted by a technical team of professionals headed by the late Professor Enock Rukare, with members, Professor Joy Kwesiga, and Mr. Tom Mugoya. Their systematic assessment confirmed that establishing of a University in the Diocese was a viable and indeed needed project on a number of grounds:
• Majority of students who qualified for admission to Universities could not all be absorbed in then very few existing Universities.
• Many students especially from rural areas and from poor families were being denied opportunities for University Education in the city areas.
• Introduction of UPE and later USE had created upsurge students with overwhelming demand and pressure for the University Education taking into account the check list and indicators in assessing Tertiary Institution under the existing laws, governing policy on Education, land size, land title and facilities (infrastructure).
After consultation with National Council for Higher Education, for considering the application for a provisional license to establish and operate a private University in the Diocese, the Diocese was advised to start with an Institute (AWIST) which was done. On 23rd June 2008, National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) granted AWIST a provisional license having satisfied the conditions required under the law. AWIST is recognized and licensed to award Diplomas and Certificates of her own. and to affiliate with any accredited University for award of degrees, which BSU and UCU (BBUC) have done well. Again, as a process to establish a University, a Letter of Interim Authority for a University Project was granted by National Council for Higher Education in December 2009 and was later renewed in June 2014.
The philosophy of the Institute and University Project is premised on the conviction that human development is a product of dedicated service driven by God-fearing values. Those in the service of others ought to demonstrate high levels of dedication and uphold Christian morals and beliefs. In this way, they become the "Light of the World."
A leading community-oriented centre of learning and research
In descriptive terms, the Institute and University Project will take the lead in knowledge and innovation that can be used for community service and development. The Institute and University Project will establish partnerships with and beyond the community to share knowledge, skills and other resources. This will make the Institute and University Project responsive to local needs, provide service to the community and champion the adaption and dissemination of knowledge, research and skills.
This vision arose out of the long-standing desire by the founders to respond to the development challenges facing the rural communities in the area and Uganda at large. These challenges require appropriate knowledge and skills which were not forthcoming from the distant and often unaffordable institutions of higher learning in the country. There was therefore urgent need to produce a specialized human resource that is empowered to satisfy both the local and global demands. Once realized, this vision will contribute to the broad Diocesan vision "To be the Salt and Light of the World"
To develop the capacity for empowering society to better respond to the development challenges by ensuring quality learning, research and community service.
"Light of the World"
(i) Compassionate and Love: AWIST/AWUP promotes love and compassion among the stakeholders and students such that they will also extend the same treatment to others.
(ii) Integrity: This is a core value highly cherished by the founders and to be promoted by all stakeholders, including staff and students. This will enhance the University’s credibility in its operations and products.
(iii) Transparency: This value will enable AWIST/AWUP members to have a collective voice, open up to one another and manage the University effectively. This value shall be achieved through continued sharing of timely reports, experiences and proper accountabilities.
(iv) Commitment and Hard work: AWIST/AWUP attainment of the vision and mission requires hard work and commitment by all and at all times. These values will therefore be key for all staff, students and other stakeholders of the Institute and University Project who will be guided by clear objectives with time frames.
(v) Discipline: A successful institution is a disciplined one. This highly cherished value will be enhanced through the establishment and
The day to day operations of the Institute and University Project is managed the management team headed by the Principal/Director. She is assisted by a team of qualified professionals. The Institute and University Project is promoted by the Board of Directors, chaired by the Bishop of West Ankole Diocese. They are responsible for the Institute and University Project assets and infrastructure. The overall management and governance of the Institute and University Project is overseen by the Governing Council. The Governing Council is assisted by the Principal/Director and the Institute and University Project’s administration team including the Secretary, the Registrar and other administration staff. Both the Board of Directors and the Governing Council are constituted of high profile professionals with different careers and academic backgrounds. This is a key strength for Ankole Western Institute of Science and Ankole Western University Project since it has been able to pull members with various skills and experience into a formidable team.
(i) Student Enrolment
The Institute and University Project is making steady progress in terms of enrolment. The first semester of 2015/2016 Academic Year has just ended peacefully. Thanks to the Lord that we have been able to register about 315 (three hundred fifteen) students for this Academic Year. Total student enrolment for all the programmes is 1028 (One Thousand Twenty Eight Students) for both males and females.
(ii) The Staff
The Institute and University Project is well staffed for Administrative, Academic and Non Teaching Staff: qualifications ranging from Doctor of Philosophy, and many Masters Degrees.
AWIST/AWUP has been in partnership with PUM Netherlands Senior Experts programme since October 2012. The Institute receives Senior Experts for Crop and Animal Science and Information Technology. This has had a big impact in the growth and development of the Institute and University Project.
All key players’ efforts right now are geared towards realizations of a Provisional Licence of Ankole Western University as a fully fledged University. Ongoing activities towards that include developing an agricultural demonstration farm with a wide variety of units, construction of a five storey Science Block, and expansion of the already existing Library. Stakeholders, Friends, Donors and all Well wishers of Ankole Western University Project are cordially called upon to give a hand towards this noble cause of transforming the Institute and University Project into ANKOLE WESTERN UNIVERSITY.