The CEDAT Open Day Conference, Innovation Challenge and Exhibition, 2024

The College of Engineering, Design, Art and Technology (CEDAT) held the 2024 Open Day drawing the participation of the students, the academia, and the Industry.

The three-day event ran from 28th February to March 1st, 2024 at the college under the Theme; Green Horizons: Cultivating Sustainable Futures through Green Skills for Green Jobs,” Showcasing projects focused on renewable energy production, energy efficiency, and sustainable transportation.

The event characterized by panel discussions, exhibitions, and pitching of student innovations was in response to the varied global challenges that call for innovative solutions. It was aimed at fostering a holistic understanding of green skills for green jobs, encouraging innovation, collaboration, and sustainable thinking among students, professionals, and private sector companies while fine-tuning students’ minds to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Students were the focus of the event which provided a stage for young engineers to exhibit their creativity, gain invaluable feedback from experts, and build confidence in their ability to make a difference.  It was also an avenue for raising public understanding of the SDGs and demonstrating how technological ingenuity can pave the way for a more sustainable and equitable future.

Unlike the past open days, the involvement of the Industry was a way of fostering collaboration and bridging the gap between academia and industry by connecting students with leading professionals and in the process creating a fertile ground for future partnerships and internships. It was also an avenue for fueling innovation and stimulating the development of groundbreaking solutions through interactive workshops and engaging panel discussions.

In line with the theme of the event, the students were imparted with a vision of a future sculpted by sustainability by attracting them to become more passionate about making a positive impact. The purpose was to empower students with the knowledge and skills needed to thrive in the green economy as well as connect with private sector companies leading to collaborations and future employment opportunities.

Day 1 of the open day had a Panel Discussion on the subject of Navigating the Green Jobs Landscape focused on the theme of Green Skills for Green Jobs and how the students should be prepared for the industry. Panelists were drawn from Kampala Capital City Authority, Joadah Design Institute, and the civil society represented by Mutesi Linda.

They discussed the subject of Identifying in-demand green skills of bridging the gap between academic knowledge and industry needs to Research, innovation, and financial literacy in the green economy and Strategies for students to build competitive green skills.

Day 2 of the CEDAT open day was about the Innovation Pitching Competition and it rotated on the theme of Igniting Green Ideas: Student Innovation for a Sustainable Future. It involves students pitching their green innovative ideas to a panel of expert judges from academia and industry.

Day 3 was the Exhibition and Networking and it was held under the theme: Connecting Ideas, Shaping the Future. The interactive exhibition showcased student-pitched ideas alongside booths from private sector companies and other organizations.  The Exhibition was characterized by live demonstrations, networking opportunities, career guidance sessions, and industry insights on green career paths. It was an open event attended by students, School pupils, and the public. It was an opportunity for them to gain insights into green skills and career opportunities, and foster student innovation and entrepreneurial spirit in the green sector.  It also helped in bridging the gap between academia and industry through dialogue and collaboration as well as showcasing cutting-edge green initiatives and technologies.

Written by Harriet Musinguzi, Principal Communication Officer MAK-CEDAT