By T’soloane Mohlomi

MASERU – Botho University in the presentation of its Sustainability & Social Impact Report 2022 unveiled its envisaged future strategic plans aimed to be implemented from 2023 to 2027 in Lesotho.

The renowned University which has earned its stripes over the years as one of the top tertiary intuitions in the country, presented the plan to stakeholders in a breakfast meeting held recently in Maseru.

Admirably within the plans and with the intention of retaining the enviable accolade, Botho University was happy to reveal that it was in the process of developing its very first campus in Lesotho, at Ha Pena Pena. Worth M73 million construction cost, the campus is tipped for completion in or around May or June 2024 and will include many recreational facilities.

Speaking at the ceremony Botho University Vice Chancellor Dr Sheela Raja Ram said with the University’s humble roots from a mere computing training provider and going on to become a fully-fledged University in 2013. They were looking forward to continue in breaking new ground and inspiring the future of innovation in Lesotho.

Dr Ram said in shaping the future, Botho University’s aim was focused on graduate employability and looked to incorporate technological advancements in its future learning strategies.

“It is my pleasure to present to you this Botho University; 25th Anniversary Sustainability and Social Impact Report 2022. Our identity as a young private University in Africa focused on graduate employability is embodied in our name ‘Botho’. The concept of Ubuntu; seen as the root for African philosophy – umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu (motho ke motho ka batho). Essentially signifying human interdependence a core foundational element of sustainability.” she said.

“Our story reflects many African stories. A humble beginning in 1997 in Botswana, as a computing training provider and then growing to become a multi-disciplinary University in 2013. Now we are operating in five countries with a growing Blended and Distance Learning campus providing greater access to the wider African population.”

“Botho University is a privately funded University that provides value to the governments and economies we serve by providing good quality and relevant programmes that support national human resource development agendas. This is the first time Botho University is publishing a Social Impact Report and we hope to make this a biennial publication.”

In addition Dr Ram said the report was in many ways a self-evaluation that had made them realize that despite being a young privately funded African University, they were able to create impact in respect of 12 out of 17 sustainable Developmental Goals enumerated in the United Nations 2030 Agenda.

Celebrating its 26th Anniversary this year, upon being founded in its native Botswana. Botho has a total number of over ten years as a University and has broken new ground by opening a new campus in Ghana, West Africa. The institution has been in Lesotho for a total of nine years and has over 2000 students and a 100 staff members at the Maseru Campus.

Among its many accolades Botho University has a total of 8540 graduates that have been produced over the last 10 years in all its campuses. And a total of $1.6 million worth of scholarships that have been disbursed over the past six years.

Botho is an all-inclusive University and has 45% of its students being females and also boasts a 49% female to male staff ratio. Being cost effective and energy efficient the institution says it has achieved an 80% reduction in water consumption on campus, and has 40% of its power derived from solar energy.

Also speaking at the event Botho University Pro Vice Chancellor Mr Golekanye Setume said the University wanted to leave a remarkable footprint in Lesotho as it spreads globally. He lauded their education structure as a winning formula.