Midland State University continues to invest heavily in Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) as a means of achieving academic and research excellence as well as enhancing service quality. Over the years the University has come-up with several innovations that have distinguished it as the foremost innovator in the use of ICT innovations.
For its efforts and unwavering commitment to innovation excellence, the University was recently awarded the ‘Best Promoter; Digital Financial Services’ in the academic institutions category at Agent Banking & Digital Financial Services Conference. The conference, which was held on the 14th of July 2016 at the Celebration Centre in Harare, under the theme ‘Leveraging Technology to Achieve Socio-Economic Transformation’, was organised and hosted by Mtilikwe Financial Services.
As one of five nominees in the academic institution’s category, Midlands State University landed the prestigious award in recognition of its ‘continuous progressive efforts in promoting, adopting, investing and supporting the use of Digital Financial Services pursuant to sustainable Socio-Economic Transformation in Zimbabwe.
Having introduced the much acclaimed Changamire Suite, an integrated information management system on 19 September 2006; a couple of years later, the University introduced a pioneering online registration systemas part of the suite, which revolutionized student registration on the local higher education scene. As the Changamire Suitecontinued to evolve in tandem with charges and regional trends in higher education, the University further broke new ground through the introduction of a radio-frequency identification (RFID) access control system, which allowed only bonafide students to access University resources. Using their (RFID) student cards (gold cards), that are also linked to their e-learning accounts, students can access a host of services from accessing examination venues to buying food in the University canteens courtesy of a cashless canteen system (popularly known as e-sadza).
The Changamire suite therefore,offers one-stop student management solutions for the entire University. Its success is anchored on an integrated online registration system linked to the University’s bank accounts, which are in turn linked to students’ accounts, ensuring that students can pay their fees from anywhere in the country via the bank and their transactions are captured in real time and automatically reflect on their e-learning accounts. Additionally, the system also allows students to pay their medical aid fees as well as their accommodation fees.
Consequently, the award, is indeed a befitting recognition of the innovative and technological journey travelled by Midlands State University from its inception to date.
Among those who attended the conference were the Minister of ICT, Postal & Courier Services, Supa Mandiwanzira and Governor of the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe, Dr John Mangudya who was the keynote speaker. The University was represented by the Bursar, Mr A Zvandasara.