Jimma University (JU) is a public research university located in Jimma, Ethiopia. It is recognized as the leading national university, as ranked first by the Federal Ministry of Education for four successive years (2009 – 2012).
The establishment of Jimma university dates back to 1952 when Jimma college of Agriculture was founded. The university got its current name in December 1999 following the amalgamation of Jimma College of Agriculture (founded in 1952) and Jimma Institute of Health Sciences (founded in 1983).
Currently the university has two campuses; the college of agriculture campus which is located next to downtown Jimma and the main campus located in the suburb of the town. Both campuses are wooded and are just like urban parks that host a plethora of wild life.
Jimma University’s main campus is located next to the former palace of the kings of the Kingdom of Jimma, which was one of the strong kingdoms in the Gibe region of Ethiopia in the years 1790 AD to 1932 AD. The city of Jimma is situated in the regional hub of the birthplace of coffee Arabica, where the stimulating effect of coffee was first discovered in the region of Kaffa in Ethiopia. According to legend, ancestors of today’s Oromo people in the region of Kaffa in Ethiopia were believed to have been the first to recognize the energizing effect of the coffee plant in the tenth century, though no direct evidence has been found indicating where exactly coffee grew or who among the native populations might have used it as a stimulant or even known about it, earlier than the 17th century. The story of Kaldi, the 9th-century Ethiopian goatherd who discovered coffee when he noticed how excited his goats became after eating the beans from a coffee plant, did not appear in writing until 1671.
Jimma University is one of the largest and comprehensive public research universities in Africa. The university graduates innovative professionals through its community oriented educational philosophy in the fields of agriculture, environment, health and medical sciences, natural and social sciences, technology and information sciences, business and economics, and education. The University has more than 4,000 faculty and staff members. It also has twelve research facilities, a modern hospital, a community school, a community radio station (FM 102.0), an ICT center, libraries and revenue generating enterprises. The university is operating on four campuses and it is on the phase of establishing its fifth campus at Agaro. Currently, the university educates more than 43,000 students in 56 undergraduate and 103 postgraduate programs in regular, summer and distance education with more enrollments in the years to come. The university has many national and international linkages and collaborations in the area of research, education and community service. Its innovative educational philosophy, staff commitment and motivation and availability of better research facility have helped the university in attracting both national and international partners.
Faculties, Institutes and Schools
The University consists of the following academic units:
- Jimma University School of Graduate Studies
- Jimma University Institute of Technology (JiT)
- Jimma University Institute of Education and Professional Development Studies
- Jimma University College Of Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine
- Jimma University College of Business and Economics
- Jimma University College of Natural Sciences
- Jimma University College of Social Sciences and Law
- Jimma University College of Public Health and Medical Sciences
- Jimma University School of Art