The first Nordic alumni event in Uganda

alumni event uganda
jb

Under the title “Meet and Greet the Nordic alumni” sixty Nordic alumni, two Nordic ambassadors and members from the Nordic Business Association in Uganda, NBA met on the evening of 30 November in Kampala for networking, snacks, drinks and “hygge”.

The “Meet and Greet” event was the very first occasion for alumni from Sweden, Denmark and Norway to meet at a cross-scandinavian-alumni-event and to network with members from the Nordic Business Association.

stålhane
Pernilla Stålhane, Chairperson Nordic Business Association (right) in conversation with the Nordic alumni

Let this evening be the first step towards more collaboration and networking between nordic business in Uganda and the Nordic alumni, said Pernilla Stålhane, Chairperson, NBA in her welcome speech.

Her words set the tone of the evening. In an atmosphere of positive energy it become an evening full of cross-professional networking among new and old friends.

norway ambassador
Ms Susan Eckey, Norwegian Ambassador (left), Vibeke Quaade, Communications Consultant Danida Fellowship Centre and Danida Alumni Network 

The two ambassadors present were the Danish Ambassador Mr Mogens Pedersen and the Norwegian Ambassador Ms Susan Eckey. The Swedish Ambassador Mr Per Lingarde was represented by Anna Maria Olsson Second Secretary Political and Commercial Affairs.

In their speeches the three diplomats emphasized how the Nordic alumni are part of the close ties that exist between the Nordic countries and Uganda.

Alumni often occupy key positions in the public and private sector, some of them also in academia and civil society organisations. So the network of alumni is an excellent opportunity for the embassy to strengthen its collaboration and out-reach to different parts of the Ugandan society. Through the alumni networks you can reinforce the public diplomacy activities and reach a broader section of the Ugandan society, said Mogens Pedersen, Danish Ambassador.

dkambassadør
Mr Mogens Petersen, the Danish Ambassador in conversation with Nordic alumni

From the alumni side there were also great satisfaction with the new Nordic networking opportunities.

We ought to turn this into an annual event for Nordic alumni in Uganda, said Godfrey Sempungu from Uganda-Norway Alumni Network by the end of the evening.

Esther Nakirulu from the Swedish Institute Alumni Network went even further into envisioning what a Nordic alumni platform can be used for.

We are thousands of Nordic alumni in Uganda. If we work together on for example entrepreneurship or sustainability activities we can move far, she said

Marris Nakayaga from Danida Alumni Network was happy about the networking opportunity the Nordic alumni evening had given her.

I have a handful of new contacts that I want to follow up on in the agri business sector, she said.

marris
Ms Marris Nakayaga, Coordinator Danida Alumni Network Uganda

The “Meet and Greet” event was initiated by NBA and Danida Alumni Network. It was arranged in a joint effort between NBA and the three Nordic alumni networks.