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Mass Communication Students Scoop Media Challenge Awards for KIU


By - Ayodeji Awobamise

Our students at Kampala International University (KIU), have continued to explore the heights through excelling in various inter-university competitions and we are not in doubt because of the wholesome academic and professional training they undergo while studying here at KIU. Just recently, three of our students (Noah Omuya, Nabisere Angel Malaika, and Kisekka Umar), from Journalism and Mass Communication Department bagged four amazing awards for KIU, at the 2018 Media Challenge Awards organized by the Media Challenge Initiative. Three of the awards were given to each of them for their individual projects, while one was for the entire team KIU.

The Media Challenge Awards is organized annually by the Media Challenge Initiative, a non-governmental organization, as a means of honoring and celebrating individuals and organizations doing exceptional work in the media industry in Uganda. With the sole aim celebrating journalism excellence across Africa, starting from Uganda, the Pearl of Africa, the Awards are only open to students studying Media in Uganda. As such, the Awards come as a two-sided part for media students where the Media award students, and in turn, students award the Media. In recognition of a new generation of journalists, the Media Challenge Awards are given to the best participants in given categories of media. The awards are given to the winners after attending a three day inter-university competition tagged the Media Challenge Expo at Mackinon Suites in Nakasero, Kampala. The Media Challenge Expo is intended to create a platform for media students in different universities that are offering Journalism or Mass Communication as a course of study.

This year, the Media Challenge Initiative organized an inter-university competition across various universities in Uganda with the theme "Reframing Media Coverage of Refugees in Uganda", and the winners were awarded on the night of 25th, November 2018, at Kampala Serena Hotel. The students winners are to be given a free internship opportunities cum training programme for six months by professional media personalities that will earn them the Media Challenge Fellowship, among other benefits.  Participants are expected to tell the best stories in reference to the given theme in both print and broadcasting media. It is from this perspective, that three of our Journalism and Mass Communication students (Noah Omuya, Nabisere Angel Malaika, and Kisekka Umar) won the Media Challenge Awards in different capacities, from their individual projects, and also collectively won the Best Luganda Team Awards for Kampala International University (KIU), as a participating institution.

NOAH OMUYA - Best Feature Story Writer 2018 Noah Omuya, the crown bearer for Mr Mass Communication KIU 2017/2018, scooped an award as the Best Feature Story Writer of the year 2018 amidst so many other participants with his story titled  Reframing Refugee Stories in Uganda; from burden to benefit. In the print category, Omuya, emerged the best writer of the feature story, earning him an award as the best feature story writer, beating all other competitors from different Universities in Uganda. Apart from that, he also got a certificate of excellence as the 2nd Runner Up for the best Refugee Story TV Reporter. Noah Omuya is completing his course of Bachelors of Arts in Mass Communication at Kampala International University.

NABISERE ANGEL MALAIKA - Best Business Reporter in Luganda News 2018 Nabisere Angel Malaika, another student from the Mass Communication Department, also scooped an Award as the Best Business Reporter in Luganda News 2018. Each participant was supposed to report a good business refugee story towards the economy of Uganda of which Angel gave in her best compared to other students from participating universities. In the end, Angel's efforts paid off, as it was rewarded with an Award of the Best Business Reporter in Luganda News for this year 2018.

KISEKKA UMAR   Best Luganda Education Reporter 2018 Kisekka Umar is a final year student of Kampala International University (KIU), pursuing a degree in Journalism and Mass communication. Kisekka's resilience enabled him win this award of the Best Luganda Education Reporter in the Inter-University Media Challenge Awards 2018, as he never gave up trying again, after participating for the second time in these competitions since 2017, where he emerged the second best in the same category. The same event also brought a resounding victory to team KIU as they emerged the Best Luganda Team in all the twelve participating universities, which indeed is a great achievement! Kisekka could not hold back his joy as he thanked God for enabling him win this award. In his words, he said:  It's been my second time participating in these competitions. In 2017 I was the second best in the same category but that just gave me the courage to go and work on my mistakes that made me not win in 2017. I watched my video clips that I produced in these competitions over and again, to learn from my mistakes, as well as consulting different people to help me improve on the mistakes. With continued practice and determination, it helped me win this award which I am very proud of. 

In his message to fellow students, Kisekka encouraged them to utilize the opportunities that come with such competitions, because they help students to gauge themselves with students from other universities, as well as paves way to interacting and networking with different media personalities who serve as role models and making new friends among peers, because the same students they compete with are the same students they find in the field, which that puts them a step ahead but not forgetting practice and knowing our area of interest. If you decide to be a reporter stick to that and develop skills for that in order to perfect it as well as other areas, but when you participate in any competitions and you don't emerge the best never lose hope because it is just training you for something bigger than you have never imagined so just keep working hard and set goals for everything you want to achieve in life. Kisekka advised.