By Nelson Bahati
MA Journalism and Media Studies, Oslo Metropolitan University-Norway.
I began fantasizing about a future in journalism research during my third year at Makerere University, when I was studying a Bachelor of Journalism and Communication. My intentions for leaving my lovely Makerere—the Ivory Tower—to join other world-renowned research-based Universities emerged. Certainly, a scholarship would be the perfect solution to the challenges of an academically ambitious but economically challenged individual like me at the time.
It was good news when I got admitted to a highly prestigious Asian institution in 2021, despite the fact that COVID-19 ruined it. It was a good start for me since it taught me about the possibility of accomplishing my academic goal. I never sat back—I kept applying for scholarships until now I am able to share my triumphs.
Like every summer with its own stories, mine is a success story of a rural-young-ambitious and dream chaser who is now admitted to a fully funded two years Master's program in Journalism and Media Studies at Oslo Metropolitan University, Norway.
I am thankful to the Norwegian Research Council for financing this study program under the Norwegian Partnership Programme for Global Academic Cooperation (NORPART). The academic relationship between Oslo Metropolitan University and the Department of Journalism and Communication at Makerere University has not only made me smile but has also paved the way for my academic ambitions.
My own efforts towards this achievement and the support from my lecturers at the Department of Journalism and Communication have highly yielded. It is likewise exciting to study in a field of my choice; Journalism and Media studies—growing to fulfil my own aspirations, setting goals, and dribbling the successes of my dreams.
Teachers, more often than not, open the doors to our future prosperity. During my fourth year, the final year of my undergraduate degree, I found the alternative of hiding my secret academic ambitions from my lecturers not only stupid but also unyielding. I discovered they could direct my path. It was no sweat for them to come on board to assist me in chasing my academic dream when I disclosed my long hidden secret. Since I believed in myself and I was motivated to pursue my ambition, I think they found it easy to support me.
But what was their role? They never had time, like every other university professor, but they always emailed to me different scholarship calls and consented to write recommendation letters for me, which I could use to apply for various scholarships. They proceeded to guide, support, and direct me towards my dream.
I intend to demonstrate my ability in this Master's degree by asking questions, identifying gaps, and finding solutions to global media concerns.