Ongwediva - The Namibian College of Opening Learning (Namcol) continues to grow in leaps and bounds, and will from next year onwards offer honours and master’s programmes.
Namcol director Heroldt Murangi made the announcement during the institution’s 21st graduation ceremony held in Ongwediva last week.
These courses include a bachelor of education in early childhood and junior primary education, honours in pre-primary and junior primary education, bachelor’s in business and entrepreneurship, master’s in youth and community development, and short courses such as a certificate in developing and teaching online courses, as well as a certificate in designing and developing online assessments.
Murangi said the choices of these programmes and others have been guided by the development needs of the country.
“As a recipient of a state subsidy, it is imperative that our programme offering speaks to the national development goals,” he added. He furthermore noted that it is crucial to gauge the speed and trajectory of developments in the global movement accurately, and to ensure that the knowledge and skills development portfolio remains relevant to national and regional development needs and aspirations.
Last year, the institution capped its first cohort of students in advanced programmes, such as Bachelor of Arts in Youth Development, and Post-Graduate Diploma in Open School Operations and Management.
Since Namcol’s inception in 1994, it has also grown in terms of infrastructural development through the expansion of regional and sub-regional offices.
“We resolve to open centres closer to our people since student support in distance education is key for student success,” said the director. Namcol’s second graduation of the year saw over 700 students graduating from 16 professional programmes such as education for development, local government administration, business entrepreneurship, English communication, youth development, and Technical and Vocational Education and Training, amongst many others.
The ceremony was held under the theme ‘Embracing global challenges in the 21st century’ here for the first time in order to relieve the financial burden of students, who in the past had to travel to Windhoek for the ceremony.
Meanwhile, the institution plans to introduce a mid-year graduation ceremony next year so that students who complete their studies at year-end do not have to wait for eight months to receive their qualifications.