Ms. Lunyolo graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Science from Makerere University after she was sponsored by TEST for Uganda from the second year of study. She received her scholarship at a time when her family was financially constrained, with the little funds available committed to elder siblings. Her grandmother, who had been supporting her, lost her eyesight in an unsuccessful eye operation and as a result was unable to monitor her farm business, which provided most of the income. Ms Lunyolo emphasises that she not only received a scholarship but also tremendous encouragement from Dr Fred Babweetera, chair of Trustees for TEST for Uganda. In her own words, Ms Lunyolo describes this opportunity as one that introduced her to a new dimension in life and enabled her to pursue her to pursue her dreams freely.
In 2017, Ms Lunyolo won a The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) scholarship to study a master’s course in Integrated Water Resources Management at the Cologne University of Applied Sciences in Germany, graduating in September 2019. Since then a further scholarship, the Carlo Schmid, is allowing Ms Lunyolo to enhance her professional experience through an internship at the United Nations World Food Programme in Timor- Leste.
Professionally, she hopes to contribute widely to the development of Water Resources Management in developing countries. Ms. Lunyolo also constantly looks for opportunities to build the alumni network and provide coaching for students in Uganda. She contributed towards the functional fees of one student in Uganda during the last academic year. Ms. Lunyolo says “the Trustees and partners of TEST for Uganda/Africa have set us a pace to which I hope to follow as I strive to carry on the spirit of the scheme”
Roland graduated in 2018 from KNUST (Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology) in Ghana with a First Class degree in Petroleum Engineering. Roland is one of a very large family and as a child was required to work in subsistence farming, and not allowed to go to school. At age 14, Roland decided to enrol himself at a primary school. Roland advanced rapidly from there to the stage where he was selected as the best pupil in the region and received a Presidential Scholarship for senior high school. After achieving a tremendous result in the West African Senior School Certificate, Roland was accepted at KNUST but could not attend due to lack of funds. While looking for scholarship opportunities, Roland found TEST for Ghana and was quickly awarded a scholarship that, together with enormous drive and determination, has enabled Roland to graduate with an excellent degree. Roland says: “I shall be a great citizen for Ghana and will forever be grateful to TEST for Ghana for their support.”
Roland Azuvugu Atanganunge
Cissy graduated in 2015 with a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology from Makerere University, College of Computing and Information Sciences, Uganda. A year before graduating, a financial crisis at home - when Cissy’s mother lost her job - meant that Cissy was unable to pay the fees for the final year at Makerere University. Although Cissy got permission from the University to take a year out, to work to get funds, she was very anxious that it wouldn’t work out, with a real risk of dropping out of University altogether. Cissy received a scholarship from TEST for Uganda and says: “I do not know how life would have turned out for me if I had not been awarded the scholarship. I now hold a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology and I cannot feel prouder of the journey so far.” As the only one in her family to attend university, Cissy is now looking to support her siblings in returning to school. Cissy is also committed to supporting TEST for Africa and has produced a film ‘The Village Champion’ which she hopes will help raise funds for TEST for Uganda, and provide a platform to inspire young people in Uganda about education. After graduating, Cissy won a film training scholarship with Multichoice Africa and is currently on a 9 month programme in Kenya. In Cissy’s words: “ I have a vision. I see a future, I now look at life differently, hopefully and confidently. THANK YOU TEST FOR AFRICA!”
Examples of other scholars in Uganda include:
(note student names changed to protect their privacy)
Miremba: HORTICULTURE - MAKERERE UNIVERSITY
Miremba started at Makerere University but after the first year financial challenges forced her to consider applying for a year out from her course to find funds to continue. A friend told her about TEST for Uganda scholarships; Miremba applied and has been able to stay on studying horticulture.
Namono: AGRICULTURE - MAKERERE UNIVERSITY
Namono is a third year student at Makerere University studying Agriculture. One of nine children of subsistance farmers, there was no family money to support tertiary education. With great determination, Namono found sufficient savings to cover the first two years of the course, but then ran out of money. The scholarship from TEST for Uganda has enabled her to continue into the third year. When Namono graduates, her ambition is to us the skills gained to help subsitence farmers like her parents become commercial farmers, improving food security and household incomes.
Dembe: AGRICULTURE & RURAL INNOVATION - MAKERERE UNIVERSITY
Dembe is one of five siblings raised by a single mother following the death of their father. Dembe was born in 1997 in poor family of five children. Dembe’s childhood dream was to attend university, but she was unable to apply due to financial constraints. A friend told her about TEST for Uganda and Dembe successfully applied for a scholarship. After completing her studies Dembe wants to engage rural communities to work on improving farming practices and adding value.
Mukisa: MEDICINE & SURGERY - MAKERERE UNIVERSITY
Mukisa is the first born of six children. Although his father supported him financially through his A Levels, tragically his father then died in a car accident. His mother works as a market vendor and was unable to afford university tuition fees. Mukisa worked in small scale farming and tutoring in a secondary school to save enough money to pay the first year’s tuition fees. At that point Mukisa planned to apply for a one year break from studies to raise money for subsequent years tuition, but a TEST for Uganda scholarship has enabled him to continue his course in medicine and surgery.
Achen: BIOMEDICAL ENG - MBARARA UNIVERITY OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Achen was fortunate to be supported through her O levels and A levels by her aunt, as her parents could not afford the fees. But the aunt had children of her own and was not able to fund a university education. Achen was passionate about going to university and searched for scholarships and came across TEST for Uganda and is now studying Biomedical Engineering
Akiki: NURSING SCIENCE - MBARARA UNIVERSITY OF SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Akiki’s academic performance at secondary school earned him a bursary that supported his entire secondary school education. Akiki applied unsuccessfully for a government scholarship to join university, so joined his family in subsistence farming during 2015. In a desperate situation, he asked his aunt for help, and she decided to sell a plot of land, but it only raised enough money to cover the first year. While at university, he learnt about TEST for Uganda which has enabled him to continue his studies.
Nasiche: BIOMEDICAL LABORATORY SCIENCE - MAKERERE UNIVERSITY
Nasiche is from a family of ten children. Her father is disabled with blindness and her mother supports the family through subsistence farming and trading. Lack of funds meant Nasiche dropped out of school and she started working as a house helper at a very young age. A neighbour, who happened to be the director of a school, was concerned about her plight and provided a bursary so she could go back to primary school and then on to secondary school. After she completed secondary school, Nasiche’s sponsor could not afford the tuition fees for university, so Nasiche searched for other sponsorship and came across TEST for Uganda.
Examples of other scholars in Malawi include:
(note student names changed to protect their privacy)
Sasha: BA in Education - Mzuzu University, Malawi
Sasha is the sixth daughter of subsistence farmers. She was the only girl in the family who went to school thanks to a bursary awarded by an NGO - the other daughters were forced to drop out because of financial constraints. After passing the Malawi School Certificate for Education in 2012, Sasha was selected by Mzuzu University to study for a BA in Education. A struggle with the school fees in the first year resulted in Sasha performing poorly in classes. Towards the end of second year Sasha found out about TEST for Malawi and was awarded scholarships to cover tuition fees for the rest of the course. Sasha said: ‘I am very thankful to T4M because its helped me to focus on my studies. This why I managed to graduate in July 2019 with an UPPER SECOND CLASS degree. Many thanks to this organization. I really appreciate for your support which you have given me.’
Alivia: BSc in Nursing & Midwifery - Kamuzu College of Nursing
Alivia grew up in very remote area of Malawi and dreamed of a career in nursing and midwifery, with the opportunity to be a change agent and role model in her community. After being selected for the Kamusu College of Nursing at the University of Malawi, Aliva was very anxious as she had no way of funding the course. The award of a scholarship by TEST for Malawi has made attending university possible and in Alivia’s words: ‘It is without doubt that my dream would have been left unfulfilled had it been TEST was not there for me’.
Gaia: BSc in Nursing & Midwifery - Kamuzu College of Nursing
When Gaia was selected to study at the Kamuzu she had no clear way of funding the course - the first year was a real struggle as Gaia had no one to rely on, so when she was awarded a scholarship from TEST for Malawi for the second year it changed her academic life. Gaia said: ‘The scholarship has greatly helped me and it’s my plea that you continue doing the good work even to the generation to come’
Isobel: BSc in Nursing & Midwifery - Kamuzu College of Nursing
Isobel is currently studying at Kamuzu College of Nursing, made possible by a scholarship from TEST for Malawi, as she was not in a position to pay the tuition fees herself and had no one else to rely on. Isobel notes that renewal applications of the scholarship for each academic year are handled efficiently, with tuition fees paid as early as possible, removing worries about their payment. Isabel said ‘I have to give my vote of thanks to TEST [for Malawi] for the great job they are doing in assisting a lot of needy students in different universities in Malawi’
With a scholarship from TEST for Ghana, Robert studied at the University of Development Studies and was awarded a BSc in Planning. Robert notes that the scholarship provided a springboard for him to achieve his dream of going to university. With the confidence that the tuition fees were covered, Robert was able to focus on studying and look for opportunities to do more. After being elected as president of the Ghana Association of Student Planners in his second year, in the final year Robert started an organisation known as the Dream Big Foundation. This provided coaching and inspiration to empower young people in the Junior High and Senior High schools in the northern part of Ghana. In a tremendous example of the commitment of a TEST scholar to contribute back to their community, Robert has visited more than 50 schools to give high impact career empowerment and motivational seminars.