Over 2 000 students graduated through the first-ever Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) hybrid graduation ceremony in Windhoek last week.
The graduation, which was also livestreamed, saw students exit from cars, walk on a red carpet up to a point where they received their graduation documents, stop briefly for an official photo, and then get back into their cars.
The unconventional but prestigious ceremony allowed graduates to celebrate the culmination of their efforts to truly absorb their new status as well as the beginning of a new chapter.
NUST vice chancellor Erold Naomab, in his pre-recorded message, highlighted that close to 40% of graduates are from the institution’s key thematic areas: science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).
“It is further pleasing to note there is an upward trajectory in the percentage of students graduating from the STEM fields over time, and also encouraging to note that women make up one third of those graduating from these areas today.”
He said NUST remains committed to the development and advancement of women at all levels.
“For our country to achieve the required level of economic growth that will drive us towards achieving our national development goals, it is essential to harness this key demographic,” he said.
Naomab then urged graduates to revel in their success after crossing trials and tribulations in their academic journey, while working tirelessly for the better.
On his own behalf and that of the NUST community, he expressed condolences to all those who have lost loved ones, saying his institution also lost staff and students to the ongoing pandemic.
“Therefore, it remains incumbent upon us all to take personal responsibility for the health and wellbeing of the Namibian society,” he said, urging graduates to follow his lead and get vaccinated.
On her part, higher education minister Itah Kandjii-Murangi commended the use of technology in education, saying the Namibian education system had to adopt the e-Learning method faster than before.
“Graduates from the computer department can utilise their skills as the country looks forward to strengthening the IT infrastructure in the education system,” she stated.
Also speaking virtually at the event, First Lady Monica Geingos congratulated the students and recognised those who have helped them along the way.
She themed her message around perseverance, describing it as the persistence in doing something despite the difficulties or delays in achieving success.
“Perseverance is graduating despite difficult circumstances; it is facing the world as it is and dealing with its unexpected twists and turns,” noted Geingos.
She urged those who have not yet graduated to not give up, but rather come back and finish their
Mastered… Mufaro Nesongano (left) and Sakeus Kadhikwa graduated with a Masters degree in Journalism and Media Technology.
Photo: Terence Mukasa