22 Feb, 2017

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Mrs Mbumba Kamowatimwa talking to prospective students in Mzuzu
Lilongwe University of Agriculture and Natural Resources (LUANAR) last week held an Open and Distance Learning (ODL) and City Campus expo to raise awareness of the programmes that are offered through these modes of delivery.

LUANAR ODL Specialist, Dr. Precious Gawanani, told the LUANAR Newsletter that the expo was organized mainly to reach out to prospective students in different corners of the country.

“This was also one way of raising awareness of the university especially about the programmes it offers and the various modes through which its programmes are delivered which include the Open and Distance Learning (ODL),” said Dr Gawanani.

He said the xpo was a success as the team managed to interact with qualified prospective students and other secondary school students who were very curious to learn about LUANAR and the programmes that are offered.

“We reached out to about 800 prospective students and we also managed to have career talks in several secondary schools like New Era Girls Private Secondary School, Kings Foundation Secondary School, Karonga Girls' Secondary School, Nkhotakota Secondary School, Chikwawa Secondary and Nkhata-Bay Seconday School,” he said.

He further said currently LUANAR is receiving applications from prospective students who would like to join the April 2017 ODL cohort saying cohort one which started in July 2016 is currently in second semester and Cohort two which began in January 2017 is in first semester.

“Through the interaction with Cohort one and two, we have learnt a great deal from this experience which will help us serve Cohort three better. We expect about 400 and that's generic and mature students,” he said.

Dr Gawanani thanked the LUANAR management for the initiative saying an expo is a great way of reaching out to prospective students and raising awareness about the University.

“Previously the expo has been taking place only in cities. This time around we extended to other districts such as Karonga and Nkhatabay in the north, Mchinji and Ntcheu in the Central region and Chikwawa and Mangochi in the southern region. Next time we intend to reach more districts especially where information is hard to reach.

Next time we also intend to take deliberate efforts that will help to increase the number of females enrolling into LUANAR programmes,” said Dr Gawanani.

One of the form four students at Karonga Girls Secondary School, Joyce Zimba, thanked LUANAR for coming to their school saying the career talk was an eye opener to the students especially the form fours as they have started thinking about their future careers.

“The LUANAR expo here in Karonga has inspired me to work extra hard so as to achieve my goal going further with my education to tertiary level and possibly LUANAR. Through this I have acquired relevant information on the programmes that are offered and the entry requirements. I will work extra hard in sciences so that qualify to be selected to pursue my studies at LUANAR said Joyce.

Mary Banda from Nkhatabay who came to apply for ODL commended LUANAR for going to places as far as Nkhatabay saying this was a great opportunity for them to understand how ODL and City Campus operates.

“ It’s really difficult for us in the remote areas to get information as these, mostly we get such information through radios and we don’t have anywhere to ask for clarification; so the coming in of LUANAR has been beneficial to us,” said Mercy.

City Campus is yet to call for applications for 2017/2018 academic year.

Written By: Patricia Nkhoma