University of Arusha

By Victor P. Kabangut’se, and Mussa S. Muneja

×

Victor P. Kabangut’se

Mussa S. Muneja, Th.D. (University of South Africa, Pretoria), is a senior lecturer at the University of Arusha in Tanzania where he teaches and serves as director of Research and External Linkages. He is a member of the East Central Africa Division Theological Research Committee. He has written articles for Andrews University Seminary Studies and the Journal of Adventist Missions. He is married to Joyce and they have two daughters.

The University of Arusha, originally known as Arusha Adventist Seminary, is an institution of higher learning operated by the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Tanzania, under the Adventist philosophy of education (holistic education) and policy to meet its mission locally and internationally.1

The university has dual accreditation, first by the Adventist Accreditation Association (2016), and also by the Tanzania Commission of Universities since 2011, when it received its charter.2

Historical Background of the University of Arusha

In 1970, the Tanzania Union Mission of the Seventh-day Adventist Church found it necessary to establish a ministerial training institution for its workers at Ikizu, 65 kilometers southeast of Musoma. In 1975, the Tanzania Union Mission combined the Adventist School of Health Evangelism at Heri Hospital in Kigoma and the Ministerial Training Institution at Ikizu. This consolidated institution was then transferred to a new site at the Usa River, 24 kilometers from Arusha, and named Arusha Adventist Seminary.3

In 1978, Arusha Adventist Seminary was upgraded to college status and named Tanzania Adventist Seminary and College. In 1992, Tanzania Adventist Seminary and College was changed to Tanzania Adventist College (TAC) and the ministerial course was replaced by a two-year diploma program in theology.4 In 1996, Tanzania Adventist College affiliated with Griggs University in the U.S.A. Under this affiliation, Tanzania Adventist College offered a B.A. in theology and religion. In 1998, the affiliation shifted from Griggs University to the University of Eastern Africa, Baraton (UEAB) in Kenya. Under this affiliation, Tanzania Adventist College offered a B.A. in theology and religion, a B.B.A. in accounting and management, and diploma courses in education and business. Tanzania Adventist College was also accredited as a teachers' college under the then Ministry of Education and Culture. With Ministry of Education and Culture Registration Number S.401, it offered a diplomas in education and secretarial science, and a certificate in secretarial science.5

In early 2003, Tanzania Adventist College began the process of transforming into a university. In September 2003, it was granted a Letter of Interim Authority by the then Higher Education Accreditation Council of Tanzania, now called the Tanzania Commission for Universities. With the Letter of Interim Authority, Tanzania Adventist College was authorized to carry the name University of Arusha. In September 2004, Higher Education Accreditation Council of Tanzania granted the University of Arusha a Certificate of Provisional Registration No.016. In 2006, the University of Arusha became fully licensed and accredited by the Tanzania Commission for Universities as a graduate university. In 2009, the University of Arusha submitted the first four graduate programs to the Tanzania Commission for Universities for accreditation in education and business.

The University of Arusha Graduate School with its programs in business and education started in November 2010 in Arusha. The school offers the following concentration areas: (a) M.A. in educational management and (b) M.A. in curriculum and instruction. The graduate school under the faculty of business offers three areas of concentration as follows: (a) M.B.A. in finance and accounting, (b) M.B.A. in strategic marketing and entrepreneurship, and (c) M.B.A. in strategic human resource.6

Social Responsibility to the Community

The neighboring village to the university, Ngongongare, has benefited from the good relationship that has been built by the university over the years. The university employs cooks, gardeners, and watchmen from the village and runs a dispensary that serves the villagers. The food to feed students and university workers in the cafeteria is purchased from the community, contributing to the village economy and development. The university allows villagers to cut grass for their cattle and to use the university playground when necessary.7

Impact on the Fulfillment of Church Mission

The mission of the university is to provide an accessible and affordable holistic education that empowers individuals to continue learning while serving the Church, the nation, and international communities. Throughout the history of the university, students have had access to quality education that has helped them fit into society and enabled them to continue with further studies. The university has been providing about 90 percent of the church workforce in Tanzania. 8 Moreover, the university aided the formation of Tanzania Adventist Primary School in 1991 and Tanzania Adventist Secondary School in 1999. Both schools are excelling in academic performance and the fulfillment of Adventist mission.9 Therefore, a joint contribution of these institutions has made the Adventist faith thrive in Ngongongare Village. To date, there are nine organized churches, three companies, and 2,600 church members. Students and workers have been evangelizing the local people. Sabbath afternoons are typically used for community service and evangelistic services.10

Current Development and Future Prospects

The university is currently constructing a US$978 million four-story building which will house an ultra-modern library capable of accommodating 3,000 persons, lecture halls, and faculty offices. This project, financed by the East-Central Africa Division, is forecasted to be finished in 2025. Given the current era of science and technology, the university has launched initiatives for science programs. Curriculum development is spearheaded by a renowned Adventist academic, Professor Pearson Mkheni. Moreover, the university is on the verge of inaugurating a constituent technical college, funded by a South Korean missionary, Pastor Sun Cha. The construction of the buildings has cost approximately US$200 million.11

College and University Leaders from 1974- Present

Pr. Ezra Mpyisi (1974-1978); Dr. John Kisaka (1979-1984); Dr. Baraka Muganda (1985); Elder D. Richert (1985-1987); Pr. B. Whaley (1988-1990); Pr. Eldad Mulwambo (1991); Mr. Joseph Maganga (1991-1996); Pr. A. Kiboko (1997); Mr. George Kusekwa (1998-2002); Dr. Vincent Goddard (2002-2007); Dr. Elton Lusingu (2008); Dr. Irvent Torres (2009-2012); Dr. Laban Mgendi (2012); Prof. Emmanuel Matiku (2012-2019); Dr. Mashauri Mjema 2019-Present.12

Contacts: Postal address P.O. Box 7, Usa-River, Arusha

Website: http://www.universityofarusha.ac.tz

Sources

Höschele, Stefan. Christian Remnant - African Folk Church: Seventh Day Adventism in Tanzania, 1903-1980. Leiden: Brill, 2007.

Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook. Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 2013.

Tanzania, 1903-1980. Leiden: Brill, 2007.

University of Arusha, Academic Prospectus 2018-2019. Arusha, Office of Deputy Vice Chancellor, Academics, 2019.

Notes

  1. “The University of Arusha,” Seventh-day Adventist Yearbook (Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 2013), 526.

  2. University of Arusha, Academic Prospectus 2018-2019, Office of Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academics, January 2019.

  3. Lameck Mwamkonda, interviewed by authors, University of Arusha, March 17, 2020.

  4. Stefan Höschele, Christian Remnant - African Folk Church: Seventh Day Adventism in Tanzania, 1903-1980 (Leiden: Brill, 2007), 201-258.

  5. David Mpwani, interviewed by authors, University of Arusha, March 16, 2020.

  6. University of Arusha, Academic Prospectus 2018-2019, Office of Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academics, January 2019.

  7. Simon Arego, interviewed by authors, University of Arusha, Usa-River, March 12, 2020.

  8. Michael Kuboja, interviewed by authors, University of Arusha, Usa-River, March 15, 2020.

  9. James Allen, interviewed by authors, Tanzania Adventist Secondary School, Usa-River, March 18, 2020.

  10. Masengo Mambwe, interviewed by authors, University of Arusha, Usa-River, March 16, 2020.

  11. Simon Ndaturu, interviewed by authors, University of Arusha, Usa-River, March 17, 2020.

  12. Simon Arego, interviewed by authors, University of Arusha, Usa-River, March 17, 2020.

×

Kabangut’se, Victor P., Mussa S. Muneja. "University of Arusha." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 09, 2021. Accessed January 19, 2021. https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=AFKL.

Kabangut’se, Victor P., Mussa S. Muneja. "University of Arusha." Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. January 09, 2021. Date of access January 19, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=AFKL.

Kabangut’se, Victor P., Mussa S. Muneja (2021, January 09). University of Arusha. Encyclopedia of Seventh-day Adventists. Retrieved January 19, 2021, https://encyclopedia.adventist.org/article?id=AFKL.