Unams’ understaffed Keetmans campus enrols over 300 students

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By Matheus
Hamutenya

KEETMANSHOOP – Over 300 students have registered at the University of Namibia (Unam) campus at Keetmanshoop, compared to 50 students registered last year.

As of Wednesday last week, the number of full-time registered students stood at 229, with 100 students having registered with the Centre of External Studies, while about 47 students were still expected to register during the late registration period.

However, the institution is yet to increase its academic staff from the seven lecturers of last year in response to the sharp increase in student enrolment.

Co-ordinating Director of the southern campus, Dr Erold Naomab, speaking to New Era, said although the campus is not fully staffed, its operations will not be compromised and other alternatives would be used where possible in order to go on with the learning process.

He explained that the campus is looking at adding 13 staff members but still this would not be enough to cater for the number of students at the campus.

“We would have liked to have the appropriate number of staff members for the number of students we are having but, of course, funding does not always allow that,” he said.

Naomab was, however, pleased that the campus has managed to retain its staff, saying it is difficult to attract people to a remote town like Keetmanshoop, and even harder to keep them.

“I can paramountly tell you that when you are in a town such as Keetmanshoop, the important thing that you want is not only [to] attract professionals but also retain them,” he added

Naomab further narrated that with the campus’ capacity fully stretched, they are looking at other methods of teaching such as video conferencing-based teaching, video-based teaching and appointing of part-time lecturers.

He also called on the community to help the students with accommodation and urged them to get involved in all activities on campus and use its facilities.

The campus started operating last year and has five programmes across three faculties.

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