By Spy Uganda
It was pomp and glamour on Saturday 26th August 2023 at Fairway Hotel where Pan African Pyramid (PAP) an umbrella organization for Pan Africanists across the globe, hosted the 6th edition of its awards commonly known as PAP Global Awards, an event that attracted hundreds of Pan Africanists to celebrate their forefathers.
The event that saw hundreds of participants proudly clad in their charming African attires was graced by famous Pan-Africanist dubbed Seventh Day Adventist Church Bishop Joshua Marara III Maponga from Zimbabwe and his wife, Cuban Ambassador to Uganda H.E Mrs.Tania Perez, UN Peace Keeping Ambassador to East Africa HE. Paul Flynn, a representative from the family of Martin Luther King Junior, and officials from various pro-African NGOs, cultural chiefs and politicians.
This year, PAP recognized 11 Pan Africanists, among them including academic pundit Prof Lawrence Muganga, the Vice Chancellor of Uganda’s mighty Victoria University who scooped Africa’s Revolutionary Educationist Award recognizing his great efforts in revolutionizing Uganda’s higher education and his tireless advocacy for an education system that fits for an African child.
Muganga in a brief speech after bagging the award, commended the PAP family for recognizing him among the many educationists on the African continent and vowed not to give up on campaigning for what he describes as ‘Authentic Learning”, an education system that prioritizes the child’s capability and skills.
”I have received this award on behalf of all scholars who advocate for any education system that makes sense. Am happy that Bishop Maponga and I speak the same language. Where do you see an education system that has a curriculum yet the real world doesn’t follow the curriculum? A student seat in a classroom Monday to Friday and graduates without experience yet the labor market demands experience. Therefore, an education system that doesn’t mirror real life is dead and we should fight it because it’s not African. Let’s embrace the African Indigenous education system which I call the Authentic Learning, An education system of the doing not cramming,” noted Prof Muganga.
Why PAP Recognized Prof. Muganga?
Dr. Lawrence Muganga is a Ugandan-born Canadian Researcher, academic administrator, learning enabler, digital economist, and award-winning author.
Prof. Muganga’s passion for education is fueled by his belief that every student deserves to connect with the possibilities in a continuously changing world of work. He is the author of bestselling books including ”You Can’t Make Fish Climb Trees’’ and Authentic University. His ultimate goal is to restore the promise of higher education and ensure that it is affordable and accessible to all.
With a career spanning for over two decades, Prof. Muganga has been recognized as a change advocator, education reformist, strategist, and enterprising leader. He is venerated for his enviable oratory and inspirational prowess and the Oxford Debate bestowed upon him the title ‘’an expert and speaker of the Oxford Debate’’.
He is on a mission to restore the promise of higher education and inspire students to connect to the possibilities in a continuously changing world of work, enable them to bridge their academic and workplace knowledge, and challenge them to learn, grow and contribute wherever they go.
Currently serving as the Vice Chancellor of Victoria University as already mentioned above, Prof Muganga has revolutionized the education system in Uganda. As a principal education scholar, he introduced authentic learning education, pronounced real-world learning for all levels of education.
Under his stewardship, Victoria University has realized a charter status from the National Council of Higher Education (NHCE) allowing it to award master’s and doctorate programs.
Under his leadership, the University introduced the EON XR reality center an Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality Learning system that brings learning to life. These milestones have made an impression and in 2021, Victoria University was entered into the top 100 regional enterprises and organizations.
Prof., Muganga is emphatic on the application of a real-world-education mode bench marking-experiential learning and work-integrated learning for students.
He envisages a contemporary student who is tech-friendly and savvy, and his ideology of ‘learning relevant to every learner and education that works for everyone is accredited to his education research that embeds technology and learning in the real world.
His research and education advisory have been applied in at least 47 countries including Sweden, Finland, Canada, USA, Ethiopia, Argentina, Singapore, Uganda, Solomon Islands and more. He is reputed for advising, reequipping and upgrading curriculum experts, teaching facilitators for 21st century needs, strategy and demystifying complex policy and his expertise has been recognized by the Uganda Journalists’ Association who awarded him the title of Best Innovative Educator on World Press Freedom Day.
Prof. Muganga’s record is coined to transform education to make it affordable and accessible for all. His record has been coined on transforming education to make it fit for the times and predict the future. His education book ‘’Authentic Learning’’ attracted several awards and grants including a $1,300,000 grant from the Bill & Belinda Gates Foundation.
His remarkable book ‘’You Can’t Make Fish Climb Trees- Overcoming Educational Malpractice Through Authentic Learning‘’ has been praised endorsed and promoted by Uganda’s First Lady and Minster of Education and Sports Hon. Janet Kataha Museveni, triggering the infusion of authentic learning into Uganda’s curriculum. The country’s education axis has forever changed for immense purpose.
With his unwavering commitment to education, Prof. Muganga has earned the admiration of educators, policymakers, and students alike. He has been invited to speak at numerous education conferences and events where he shares his insights and expertise on the future of education and how to make it more relevant and accessible to all.
As a researcher, academic administrator, and learning enabler, Prof., Muganga has an incredible positive mark on the field of education. His innovative ideas and practical solutions have transformed education systems across the globe and helped countless students to connect to the possibilities in a continuously changing world of work. With all the above and many others, PAP couldn’t find any other great Pan-Africanist in the field of education than Prof Muganga thus recognizing him with Africa’s Revolutionary Educationist Award.