Historical Note

The idea of a University in the Midlands dates back to the foundation of the National University of Science and Technology when Gweru, which was identified as a possible site for a second university campus in the country, lost its bid to Bulawayo. Two other opportunities to host institutions of higher learning (the Open University and the Catholic University) were also missed by the Midlands Province, when the two universities went to Harare instead. It was in the midst of such disappointments that two initiatives gradually converged to give birth to what has since become the Midlands State University. His Excellency, the President R G Mugabe, on the nudging of the Provincial political leadership of the Midlands, accepted to the idea of a national university being built in the Midlands.

This coincided with the then Ministry of Higher Education and Technology’s policy of devolution, which was aimed at expanding access to higher education by converting teachers and technical colleges into degree granting institutions. It was through the process of devolution that beginning in 1998 Gweru Teachers College started to enrol students studying for the Bachelor of Commerce with Education and the Bachelor of Science with Education degrees offered by the University of Zimbabwe.

Establishment of the University

In the meantime, although the devolution policy inaugurated an irrevocable process of bringing university education to the Midlands, there was a strong feeling, especially in the Province, that what was being done did not quite amount to the President’s promise of a fully fledged state university in the province. Responding to these feelings, but without losing sight of constraints imposed on Government by declining national funds, the Minister of Higher Education and Technology transformed the devolution project at Gweru into Zimbabwe’s third state university by means of the State University in the Midlands Act of April 1999.

The new University, whose name was later changed to the Midlands State University, was to be initially housed at the Gweru Teachers College premises. The mandate of the institution was contained in its broad objects which are the advancement of knowledge, the diffusion and extension of arts, science and learning, the preservation, dissemination and enhancement of knowledge that is relevant for the development of the people of Zimbabwe through teaching and research and, so far as is consistent with the objects, the nurturing of the intellectual, aesthetic, social and moral growth of the students at the University.

Campus Site

The University started using the former Gweru Teachers’ College facilities, which included Batanai campus in Senga Township. The City of Gweru originally offered the new University the piece of land used by the Zimbabwe National Army as a shooting range for training purposes on condition the Defence Forces were willing to cede it. When the Army found no suitable alternative, the University had to look for other options. Fortunately Government came up with a 164 hectare piece of state land conveniently adjacent to the former Gweru Teachers’ College. In addition the University purchased 188 hectares from Tel One, where more teaching and student facilities are being developed.

The University was founded as the country faced its worst economic challenges arising out of illegal sanctions imposed by western countries. This in turn severely limited state capacity to support public institutions, especially Universities. The institution had to come up with strategies of raising income to provide minimum physical infrastructure for both teaching and its management, to provide for contractual requirements of staff beyond the Government salaries and to support a massive staff development programme especially following the 2008/9 exodus of human skills from Zimbabwe. Quite a number of fundraising and income generation initiatives were tried but only one in the end was a success. And that was the establishment of the parallel programmes, which we borrowed from East African Universities. It is an initiative which supported spectacular infrastructure development and production of suitably qualified teaching, administrative and support staff, when the rest of the country was going through its worst economic crisis. This impressive growth translated itself in the successful operationalization of the multi-campus concept leading to the establishment of the Zvishavane, Harare and Kwekwe campuses. In recognition of its strong-willed efforts as well as sound leadership Midlands State University was also mandated to incubate the Manicaland College of Applied Sciences until it became a fully-fledged State University of Applied Sciences.

Programs taught in:
English

This school also offers:

MA

Midlands State University

The programme aims to train students who will be able to develop and apply sound conceptual, analytical and critical skills that are required for an in-depth study of var ... [+]

Objectives The programme aims to train students who will be able to develop and apply sound conceptual, analytical and critical skills that are required for an in-depth study of varied issues and themes in African History. The major objective of this programme is to produce students who will produce new forms of knowledge and competencies relating to African history in a global intercultural environment. Entry Requirements

Applicants to this programme should normally hold a good Honours Degree in a relevant field such as History, Development Studies, and Economic History. The Department may, at the discretion of the Departmental Board, require an applicant to attend a pre-admission interview or examination to satisfy itself of the candidate’s ability to complete the programme applied for. Eligibility will not guarantee admission.... [-]

Zimbabwe Gweru
September 2019
Full-time
4 semesters
Campus
Midlands State University

The general objectives are to: promote high conceptual and inquisitive skills in archaeological issues, develop competencies within specialist archaeological areas, gener ... [+]

Objectives

The general objectives are to:

promote high conceptual and inquisitive skills in archaeological issues. develop competencies within specialist archaeological areas. generate interest for research in archaeology. Career Prospects

Master of Arts in Archaeology degree programme is designed to enhance the competencies of graduates in the fields of human culture research, museum curation, cultural organization management, environmental management, heritage consultancy, parks and wildlife management and university lectureship.

Entry Requirements

To be eligible for the programme, an applicant must have a good first degree in any of the following:

(1) Archaeology, Cultural Heritage and Museum Studies... [-]

Zimbabwe Gweru
September 2019
Full-time
4 semesters
Campus
Midlands State University

The programme is for students interested in careers in contemporary development issues. ... [+]

Objectives The programme is for students interested in careers in contemporary development issues. The programme aims to develop the sound conceptual, analytical and critical skills that are required in dynamic and complex modern development contexts. Entry Requirements To be enrolled in the programme, prospective students should be having a good honors degree in History and Development studies Other degree holders shall be eligible for admission at the discretion of the Departmental Board General Provisions The number of modules taken by any student from outside the department may be restricted. The offering of elective modules depends on the availability of staff and/or teaching loads of available staff. Assessment Examinations, which shall normally be written at the end of each semester, comprise three-hour papers for theoretical modules. Continuous assessment includes tests, essays and seminar paper presentations. Failure to meet deadlines shall be taken to mean failure to carry out assigned work. A student is normally required to attain 100% attendance of lectures. Programme Structure ... [-]
Zimbabwe Gweru
September 2019
Full-time
4 semesters
Campus