More About Makerere University


Standing at 4,188 feet above sea level, this hill is called the ‘fountain of knowledge’ or ‘the hill of the learned’. This is because Makerere University, the first public university in the country, is located on this hill.According to legend, this hill was once known as Bwaise. Then one day, one of the kings of Buganda stayed a night out with a woman and forgot to sneak back to his Mengo palace under the cover of darkness. When he realized that dawn had come while still in the concubine’s place, he reportedly exclaimed; “Ganno makerere”, meaning it has dawned without my realization. From then onwards, the hill reportedly came to be known as Makerere.

True or false, the landmark of this hill is Makerere University, started in 1922. At the base is Wandegeya shopping centre. Wandegeye is a place that never goes to sleep, with drinking and parting going on up to the wee hours of the morning. The youthful university students that frequent the place provide the catalyst to the revelry.

The Makerere University Main Building


Established as a humble technical school, Makerere University is one of the oldest and most prestigious Universities in Africa. In January of that year, the school, which was later renamed Uganda Technical College, opened its doors to 14 day students who began studying Carpentry, Building and Mechanics.The College soon began offering various other courses in Medical Care, Agriculture , Veterinary Sciences and Teacher Training. It expanded over the years to become a Center for Higher Education in East Africa in 1935. In 1937, the College started developing into an institution of higher education, offering post-school certificate courses. In 1949, it became a University College affiliated to the University College of London. In 1963 it became the University of East Africa, offering courses leading to general degrees of the University of London.

With the establishment of the University of East Africa on 29th June 1963, the special relationship with the University of London came to a close and degrees of the University of East Africa were instituted. On July 1, 1970, Makerere became an independent national university of the Republic of Uganda, offering undergraduate and postgraduate courses leading to its own awards.

With the establishment of the University of East Africa on 29th June 1963, the special relationship with the University of London came to a close and degrees of the University of East Africa were instituted. On July 1, 1970, Makerere became an independent national university of the Republic of Uganda, offering undergraduate and postgraduate courses leading to its own awards.

Today Makerere University has twenty-two faculties/institutes/schools offering not only day but also evening and external study programmes to a student body of about 30,000 undergraduates and 3,000 postgraduates (both Ugandan and foreign). It is also a very active centre for research.

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