Dr Sarah Ssali has been appointed Ag. Dean School of Women and Gender Studies, Makerere University. She takes on from Dr Josephine Ahikire who is now the Deputy Principal of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences (CHUSS). At the handover ceremony held today, 17th August, 2017, Dr Ahikire briefed the incoming Dean about the accomplished and pending tasks and pledged to support her to further uplift the image of the School. Dr Ahikire appreciated the University Management and staff for the support accorded to her during her term of office. She also thanked her predecessors for setting a firm foundation for Gender Studies.
For the two years Dr Ahikire has served as Dean, the School of Women and Gender Studies has registered a number of achievements including building local and international partnerships and enhancing the research profile of the School. In 2016, the School of Women and Gender Studies in partnership with UN Women and Uganda Buereau of Statistics facilitated the initiative around developing the National Priority Gender indicators. Under the theme illuminating the path to gender equality and sustainable development, the gender statistics programme is located within the SDG agenda and is aimed at creating a framework for monitoring progress particulalry on SDG Goal 5. The initiaive resulted into the development of a metadata and set targets for gender indicators to faciliate ownership as well as harmonize and refine Gender Equality Priority Indicators to be integrated into the Uganda National Standard Indicator Framework (NSI) to inform planning, monitoring and evaluation and reporting. The Uganda Gender Equality Priority Indicators publication was launched on November 24, 2016. In addition, the School of Women and Gender Studies launched an outreach training programme aimed at creating a formidable force of intellectuals with the ability to comprehend gender dynamics, plan and advocate for gender equality from an informed position.
In a bid to further enhance the capacity of local governments in Uganda, the School carried out a comprehensive assessment of the Postgraduate Diploma in Gender and Local Economic Development (GLED) to review its relevance and establish strategies for improvement. GLED is a one-year course offered at the School in collaboration with the Ministry of Local Government; Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development and UN Women. The course focuses on introducing and activating Local Government capacity to work with relevant stakeholders on developing integrated and gender equitable Local Economic Development promotion strategies that are grounded in thorough understanding of the local economy to ensure the achievement of a coherent, sustainable and equitable development outcome that supports Uganda’s development vision.
In her remarks, Dr Ssali appreciated Management for according her the opportunity to serve as Dean. “This is a paradigm shift with a lot of learning to do. I pledge to work closely with all staff to take the School to another level,” she said. She thanked the outgoing Dean for her selfless contribution to the development of the School.
The ceremony was witnessed by Mr. Patrick Akonyet from the Directorate of Internal Audit who applauded Dr Ahikire for adhering to the stipulated handover guidelines in her report. It was attended by the Principal of CHUSS, Prof. Edward K. Kirumira who thanked Dr Ahikire for her diligent service and pledged to support Dr Ssali through the transition.
About Dr Sarah Ssali
Dr. Sarah Ssali is an Associate Professor of Gender Studies. She holds a PhD in International Health Studies from Queen Margaret University, a Master of Arts in Gender Studies from Makerere University and a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences from Makerere University. In addition to these is an accumulation of certificates of short courses undertaken in different fields. She has experience researching social sciences dimensions of health. As a Social Scientist, she has vast experience in ethnographic research methods. Dr Ssali is particularly interested in studying hidden behaviors and non hetero-normative sexual behaviors, aspects of minorities in society aiming to understand how they are structured, what drives these behavior and strategies for change and improvement where such behavior may be detrimental to self and others; and the extent to which they are gendered. As a result Dr Ssali has conducted research in social networks of people living with HIV; gender law and sexuality, legal aspects of traditional circumcision, femininities and masculinities, gender dimensions of health and wellbeing as well as health financing and has a wide research experience in multiple areas including Gender, HIV and AIDS, Reproductive Health, Health Systems, Public Policy and Politics. Although most of her research has been focused on Uganda, it has often been undertaken in research consortia involving countries including Sierra Leone, Cambodia, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, USA, UK, Norway, Sweden and Ireland. Dr Ssali is also a member of the Makerere University Council representing Academic Staff; a member of the Appointments Board; a member of the Quality Assurance Committee and Chair of the Student Affairs Committee. She is also the Coordinator of CHUSS' Seminar Series.
See procedure and requirements for handover below