Prof. Oladele O. Arowolo
On behalf of the International University of Management (IUM), it is my pleasure to welcomes you all – students, staff and esteemed stakeholders – to the 2022 Academic Year. In spite of the drawbacks experienced by students, staff and guardians, and indeed the whole nation, caused by the ravaging effects of COVID-19 pandemic, year 2021 was a fruitful year at IUM because of heightened level of commitment and perseverance exhibited by the university community.
Students: The University has been making notable progress in various spheres. Total registered student population increased from 8654 in 2020 to 1200 in 2021. Unlike the traditional physical registration in the years before, the 2021 registration was completed across the campuses online. Online application was also introduced and, together with registration online and blended teaching and learning, the digital age has dawned in the university.
To ensure the effective integration of students in the IUM community, provisions have been made through the Student Liaison Office, the Dean of Students, the University Counselling Office and the Student Representative Councils (SRCs) at each campus to address emerging needs of students outside the lecture halls. Over the years, these institutional structures have proved quite effective in addressing the welfare of students during the period of their stay at IUM.
At IUM, the student body represents one of our major stakeholders and all efforts are directed at teaching, learning and moulding students who graduate with high standards of academic achievements, self-confidence and integrity. The structure of our programmes is such that students are prepared to excel not only in academic performance but in creativity, especially with regard to self-employment and becoming potential employers of labour in today’s shrinking market of employment opportunities.
At the 17th Convocation held at Dorado Campus in September 2021, a total of 2841 qualifications/certificates were awarded to deserving graduands, 31% more than the 2167 certificates that were awarded in 2020. Ten (10) new qualifications, namely 3 new Bachelor Honours degrees in Education and 7 Diplomas were awarded by the university for the first time in 2021, an indication that IUM is growing higher institution of education.
Institutional capacity: In addition to the existing six faculties (Business Administration; Strategic Management and Leadership; Education; Health and Social Sciences; Information and Communication Technology; Tourism, Hospitality, and Events Management), the School of Postgraduate Studies, Centre for Improved Institutional Performance (CIIP), Distance and E-Learning Centre and, Research and Consultancy Centre, the following academic structures were established in 2021: the Centre for Environmental Studies in January 2021, offering courses leading to the award of: Bachelor (Hons), Master’s and PhD degrees in various areas of the broad discipline. The Graduate School of Business (GSB) was also established with effect from January 2021. The School of Business is designed to fill the gap in in education in the field of management and business administration by offering unique services and offering courses at Masters and PhD levels.
In terms of programme delivery, we were employing the face to face mode until the circumstances of COVOD-19 pandemic constrained all institutions of learning, particularly higher learning, to adopt online teaching and learning in addition to face to face. To this end, IUM started to prepare both staff and students in 2020 to adjust to online mode of course delivery. In 2021, the Namibian Qualifications Authority (NQA) conducted their accreditation and re-accreditation missions to the university and in August 2021, and NQA confirmed to IUM that re-accreditation has be granted to the university on all the 63 NQF registered qualifications for a period of three (3) years. Based on the decision of IUM Management, as from the 2022 Academic Year, the Ongwediva Campus of the university will become Centre of Excellence for Education. This means that the Campus will be devoted solely to the administration of Education programmes. All students at Ongwediva campus who are currently pursuing courses in programmes other than Education will be allowed to continue while those programmes are being phased out. By implication, from January 2022, there will be no more student intakes into academic programmes at Ongwediva other than Education.
As part of its institutional development, IUM is implementing the expansion of its infrastructural facilities, including additional lecture halls and library structures. To this end, the university conducted an official ground-breaking of new Library and Lecture Halls at its Ongwediva Campus on 09 April 2021, and is set to embark on a similar multi-million dollar building complex at Dorado Park, Windhoek very soon.
Staff: The University continued to sustain its staff capacity, and even improve, during the 2021 academic year. All cases of attrition through resignations or death were adequately addressed by the HR Division with new recruitments, including part-time offers. In addition a number of our young academic staff completed their PhD degrees in their respective fields of specialization, contributing to improved quality of programme delivery. Moreover, the training programme towards the award of Postgraduate Diploma in Higher Education designed for all IUM academic staff members who have not received formal training/qualification in Education has attracted quite a number of IUM staff, and has been running smoothly.
In spite of the negative effects of COVID-19 pandemic on the economy in general, IUM management remained optimistic about future trends and, with boldness, put in place a series of measures aimed at enhancing the welfare status of all categories of its staff – academic, administrative and support.
Research & Consultancy: Research at IUM Policy was prepared and shared with the Founder during the month of November 2020. Based largely on submissions by Deans of faculties, the report reviewed the policy basis for research at IUM and drew together recent and on-going research activities by lecturers as basis for presenting a corporate research agenda for the institution. The report presented a platform for individual and group research by academic staff in 2021. Academic staff members continued to engage in rigorous research activities leading to individual and/or group publications in academic journals and peer reviewed books at national and international levels. In this regard, it is pleasing to report that the latest edition of IUM publication, the Namibia Journal of Managerial Sciences, Volume 4 No. 2, was published in April 2021.
The university Research and Consultancy Centre (RCC) was quite busy in 2021. RCC managed the execution of a number of projects for public and private organizations, including: Ministry of Gender Equality; National Planning Commission; Environmental Investment Fund/NILALEG; Debmarine; Nyae Nyae Ecotourism; UNDP, among others.
Community Engagement: As part of its core functions as a university, IUM continues to get involved in community engagement for the furtherance of social and economic development of the country. Selected IUM staff members continue to serve in Government established Boards and Committees, as well as make informed contributions to public discourse on emerging development issues.
At the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Association (APHEIN) held on 12 March 2021, Prof. David R. Namwandi (IUM Founder & Council Chair) was elected as the new President of the Association. IUM wishes him every success in this new and challenging role.
General: It seems that the current IUM academic calendar puts IUM graduates at a disadvantage in the job market given that, the other universities conduct their graduation ceremonies in April whereas IUM does it’s by September. The Governing Council considered this limitation and directed that the proposal that, from the year 2022 onwards, the university should introduce two graduations; a) IUM Winter Graduation in May and; b) IUM Summer Graduation in October.
As in the previous years, you are all welcome to experience IUM by going through the various programmes available in this Prospectus. You are also encouraged to search online for additional information in the different areas of academic interest that a university might offer (go to:www.ium.edu.na). All our stakeholders, including new and incoming students, as well as potential students and interested organisations are encouraged to familiarise themselves with this new Prospectus on the most current information about this University.
You have my best wishes for a pleasant and fruitful IUM experience.
Prof. Oladele O. Arowolo, PhD