Benard Oguti

THE NEED TO STUDY IN A CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY
“…education focused on raising academic giants alone without instilling Godly values in them and shaping their character renders such education holistically incomplete…”

Hundreds of universities are spread all over the world and all of them striving in educating their scholars with knowledge in various professions. But the question is, do all of them aim at nurturing their learners into value-centered and God fearing scholars as well? All universities have missions and visions that guide their learners, however of recent times, the challenge towards keeping these two aspects on perspective has been a question of debate. European and African high education institutions have been marred with riots, lecturers’ strikes and even politicized involvements. As a result, the values and objectives of these institutions have been barely followed up or on another instance; they are being compromised in the name of fitting into the modern era. More focus has been shifted to mass enrollment in public universities for continuous sustenance and unavoidably, the flocking in of high school grandaunts, who are excited to join university. Meanwhile in private universities, profit maximization has been the focus.

The issue of whether values-centered quality students are graduated or not isn’t all that a priority instead quantity has been the driving factor of most universities––the more populous an institution is, the great or quality–like it is. Less focus on quality, value-centeredness, and the uniting goal of education therefore has not been taken seriously.
Although most universities do have guidelines that shape the behaviors of their scholars, barely are they practically followed and besides, the aspect of self motivation and inspiration from the enactors of these rules is wanting. A case in point is where a university has a code of conduct that forbids drinking and smoking but one of the lecturers is involved in such acts openly before the learners. This becomes difficult for the students to follow the obligations–––it becomes more of don’t do what I do but what I say mentality and yet authorities expect their students to be disciplined and upright without themselves being exemplary. Universities must be the source, the channel and the reference of inspiration and exemplariness to their students to look up to. The ideology of students once in university being free birds must be suppressed as it’s a threat to realization of full performance of students and a risk of graduating half-baked scholars––we need Christian personal–parenting universities
We do have ”distinguished” universities with really quality apparatus that perhaps attract students and also on the other hand, enhance creativity and academic excellence but the very institutions barely stress emphasis on the spiritual–character development of their learners and rather leave it as an option with focus on training academic giants. They would preferably refer you to a theologian school if you want to be a pastor or grow spiritually. But education focused on raising academic giants alone without instilling Godly values in them and shaping their character renders such education holistically incomplete. To achieve a whole–round scholar isn’t just in teaching them to solve or invent theories but to equip them with Godly values and help in molding their character.

Education shouldn’t isolate people to laboratories alone but should be a platform that brings scholars together and identifies us as humans who need to learn, live and grow together. That’s why we need not only a university that has all the academic equipment but also a firm Christian values-centered university. Not just having theology as part of their disciplines but having these theological values practically lived and exemplified in both the students and the learners.

World scholars seeking for knowledge need to be a part of a Christian oriented university which not only focuses on academic excellence but also character shaping and values-development. We do have as well Christian universities that have all the academic apparatus to raise intelligent scholars but the kind of education that will help transform the world is that which focuses on raising value centered scholars who will be able to fit into all kinds of societal cultures––which must be their underlying focus.
To fear God is to have knowledge and that’s actually the beginning of it and so, settling to values–growth for a scholar opens doors for all opportunities. They normally say, your papers will give you the job but it’s your character that will keep you in the job. I think we need universities that teach their scholars on how they can remain ethical and employable Christian servant leaders in their workplaces––and it’s not about having A’s and First class degrees but to have godly established values and character that enables us to stand out as servants of integrity.

And yes, we want to build the nations of African and the world at large but what will we use for building, our papers or our values? The more we engage ourselves as young leaders and scholars to study the word of God and grasp its lessons about life and embrace it as part of our lives, then we can build the foundation on which other generations can rest on; our papers can rot, be stolen or swept away by floods but our values and character remains inside of us.
Livingstone International University in Mbale, Uganda has been one of the practical Christian institutions I got the divine opportunity to study in. With their vision of transforming Africa through quality Christ centered higher education and their mission of raising ethical, empowered, employable Christian leaders in every sector of society, the highest calling of being agents of change is summed up in this two aspects: if all scholars worldwide can embrace the values of Christ no matter their religious affiliations and work towards being ethical, empowered with these values then add onto the practical and creative oriented higher education obtained, transforming Africa would not be a giant to face.

Livingstone International University besides being very practical in their education offers one of the most urgently needed ingredient lacking in our contemporary education and learners, which is the pursuit for godliness and the transforming power of embracing Christ’s values and truth as a completing components in a scholar’s life. What more do we need besides our academic knowledge but the knowledge and  wisdom to be servant leaders with values of integrity, compassion, and love for all mankind which no ”prestigious” institution ever provides except when they pursue their scholars to uphold such values?
Livingstone International University exists to redefine what is considered a prestigious or distinguished university; which is a university that focuses on raising morally values-pivoted scholars with not only creative and practical skills but with a desirable character that triggers world transformation.
That’s what the world lacks and yet needs. We have thousands of grandaunts with great papers but still experience unfulfilling lives. That is because certain elements are missing to make such a scholar complete; to be a complete leaner is to be possessed with Godly values that guide you to use your skills for the purpose of transforming the environment around you.
Livingstone International University just six years old, among other academic resources has a media studio for both radio and television as well as a print newspaper which not only gives the scholars the chance to learn practically at first hand before they go outside there, but this high tech-education incorporated with daily chapel fellowships in four days a week and mentoring sessions gives the students a wider scope of viewing life beyond academics but use these technologies to reach out with the truth of God and thereby enable them to grow spiritually, mentally, physically, and socially which is the kind of holistic higher education the world needs right now.

The university therefore offers education that helps its learners to not only be creative and academically sound but most crucial of all, values-centered and character transformed so as to enable them to discover their purposes in life and embrace the uncertainties of today’s world with forearmed knowledge and confidence.
I believe African scholars can be confident to play a transforming role today only when they have been a part of education institutions that guides them to discover their visions, purposes and goals in life by character refining and spiritual emphasis besides academic excellence.
Livingstone international university is one of such institutions a scholar who doesn’t want to be shocked by life’s unanswered questions academics alone can’t answer would consider not just joining and studying in it but becoming part of its vision and mission.
My first degree is going to be from this Christian university and I am already filled with confidence that not only will I get high paying jobs but I have a clear direction about my purpose and personal goals at hand that I never learnt in a Media class but in my daily interactions with God through the opportunities the university offers to her learners to discover, develop and follow their dreams, visions and purposes in life.

Unfortunately not all universities are designed this way but as these university aliases itself as the only “personal university”––indeed it has enabled me to personally realize my true personality that God has predetermined me to become.
Benard Oguti Exojoy, a third year student pursuing Bachelors in Media Technology, Livingstone International University.

I’m so hopeful this semester- John Khaukha

Meet John Khaukha – Media Student

We are back from the holiday, and we have a lot ahead of us all in this semester. My holiday was busy, but I’m so happy about what I was doing and I thank God for that! I spent the holiday using my skills in photography, I had a commercial wedding photography engagement, did a documentary for the Talloires Network about Energy Saving Stoves made out of clay and an advert for a hotel. But Just before I returned back, I joined a Church Youth Camp in Namugongo, Reaction Tour, under the Kenneth Copeland Ministry. At the camp, I was leading a group over 300 boys, working as a ministry leader in the boy’s section for 1 week, it was a great place to use my leadership skills.

Talking about academics, this is my last semester, and this means I will be sitting for my finals. This means a lot me, and to my fellow finalists. It’s a challenge ahead of us, but I’m so hopeful, and I hope everyone is so determined. We have a lot of activities planned in the Guild, Chapel and the Media Academy but I will be focused on accomplishing my course at the same time. I will be working on my research dissertation; designing tools and instruments, and collecting enough data. The new class adjustments also look favourable especially to us the finalists, it gives us enough time to do personal study and it will help us do our dissertation in time. We are looking forward to excellency!

Arinaitwe-Henry

LivingStone: A place with a lot to offer – Arinaitwe Henry

Arinaitwe Henry | BBA Student, Guild Speaker

Studying at LivingStone has helped me grow, both at campus and outside! As a Guild speaker, I have developed my public speaking and leadership skills that continuously apply throughout my holiday times. This past holiday, I managed to work and keep up at Step TV and Step Radio despite the fact that I’m a business student, with passion for media and willingness to learn. I also volunteered with Casa Uganda Safaris, a growing tour and travel company in Mbale.

LivingStone has remained a strong foundation to my personal development; academically and spiritually ever since I joined! It’s a place with a lot to offer; from mentoring to become better and active citizens, to producing ethical and employable Christian graduates who are empowered to transform African communities.

Academically, I feel I’m in the best position, not as I would be if I were in any other university in Uganda. Being a BBA Premium student, a 4 years’ course, puts me ahead of other fellow graduates doing a 3 year BBA program. Since there is not another university in Uganda offering BBA Premium my chances of being employed when I graduate are high. As this semester goes on, I’m keeping my grades high, keeping up with the new academic changes and planning for my internship at the end of the semester.

LivingStone International University

Freshers: Common Challenges You Might Face as You Join University

It’s a new semester and probably a new level, especially for those who are transitioning from high school to university. It may look like a very long journey, but even a thousand-mile journey starts with one single step. There will be challenges, mistakes, and the feeling of being lost, especially in the first week of coming back or joining in, but relax, We’re here to help you. Today we are sharing common challenges that you might experience in your first week at university.

LivingStone International University

LIU Photo

Missing Lectures: Hopefully, you are already excited about being in control of and in command of yourself, and you need to be focused on attending all of your lectures; after all, this is the primary reason for paying your tuition! Every lecture matters, both at the start and at the end, so don’t relax and think that the semester’s first lectures are minor, or you might be shocked when sitting for your first test.

LivingStone International University

Web Photo from-lifehacker

Sleeping Too Much: This could be the reason you might miss lectures. As I have said, you should always understand that studying is the primary reason for you and your parents who are paying your fees, so you should set your priorities well. Use your smart phone to set alarms and reminders and to keep track of your upcoming engagements with other people.

LivingStone International University

Web Photo from picjumbo.com

Hiding in Your Room: This is so common for non-resident students who are not staying in university hostels. You shouldn’t be spending much time at home or on video games. As time goes on you will realize that you need to be spending most of your time at school or with fellow students around the university. The truth is that you need to make friends and to start sharing and working together through the entire course duration.

LivingStone International University

LIU Photo

Thinking that You Need Only a Few Friends: The truth is that everyone matters in one way or another and that having a bigger network will make your life easier during your time at university. While it is wonderful having close friends, it is critical to keep a great relationship with other students who you will continue working with at the campus. There are unlimited benefits to create a hub of friends around you, this might help you to achieve your first leadership role. At last it might even lead you to your first employment position or part-time job.

LivingStone International University

Web Photo from picjumbo.com

Forgetting to Communicate Back Home: Joining university doesn’t mean you are no longer part of the family back at home. You will miss them as time rolls on, and you will still need their help. Utilize social media platforms like Messenger and WhatsApp, and don’t forget to call Mom and Dad to let them know how much you miss them. This will show how much you treasure them, and they will always work hard to support you through university.

LivingStone International University

Web Photo fro picjumbo.com

Ignoring the Use of Gadgets and Techs: Learning has really changed today. You have plenty of content at your fingertips and can use your kindle or your phones to collect your notes, to do research, and to learn new tools. Don’t forget to visit the university computer lab–which is not exclusively for IT students–to learn vital programs like Microsoft Office and to learn how to use USB drives and cloud storage platforms like OneDrive, Google Drive, and Dropbox. This will help keep your crucial data safe.

Lastly, as you join university it is a great time to learn more about yourself and to transition to being a better version of yourself. Listen to feedback from your fellow students and lecturers. And, more importantly, take care of your health and well being, make sure you always have your toothpaste, wash clothes regularly, keep your hair clean and always stay clean.

Good Luck!

Daaki Joshua