”Universities aren’t just places where students listen and lecturers tell them what they should know. Students should also be able to study further on their own, to develop their own well-informed views on various matters - and for that, they need a fully-equipped library.”
So said Joachim Jacobs, Director of the UWC HIV & AIDS Programme, speaking at a very special occasion: the donation of 750 health science texts to the Lusaka Apex Medical University (LAMU) from UWC Library and the UWC Departments of Occupational Therapy, Physiotherapy and Nursing.
Lusaka Apex Medical University is a Centre of Excellence in Medical, Nursing and Health Sciences Education, Research and Specialised Clinical Care. As a private university, they provide an alternate route for health and medical education for students who want to become doctors and medical specialists, and also provide quality research to help support the country’s fight against the double burden of communicable diseases (such as malaria, TB, HIV/AIDS) and non-communicable diseases (hypertension, diabetes).
Dr Oswell Khondowe, Dean of LAMU’s Faculty of Health Sciences and former student at UWC, said the donation was very welcome, and would help the University continue their groundbreaking work and build the next generation of health scientist in Zambia.
“LAMU’s library has a huge lack of scientific texts in the field of health sciences, particularly in the fields of Physiotherapy, Occupational Therapy and Nursing,” he said. “The Faculty that I head will significantly benefit from this donation.”
Beyond Books: A Partnership To Improve Health
The collaboration with the Department of Occupational Therapy (and in particular Prof Lisa Wegner) and the HIV & AIDS Unit (who hosted Dr Khondowe’s visits to UWC and helped set up links with other departments) has been a wonderful start to the partnership between UWC and LAMU.
“The current donation came as a result of this partnership and we are very pleased that colleagues at UWC have responded to the call to assist,” said Prof Wegner
“The Lusaka Apex Medical University, as a very young institution, is in great need of building their library stock - and we aim to help them get the books they need to accomplish their mission,”
The current donation is just a first step: the OT department has already started a second round of book collections, and hopes to increase the total from 750 to 1000 books this year.
And there’s no need for the partnership to stop at literary exchanges.
“I am excited about the future of this partnership,” Dr Khondowe said, “and I hope that we can further extend on this through staff and student exchanges and collaborative research projects. Together, we can make a big difference.”