38 Rwandan students yesterday graduated with Masters in Business Administration (MBA) degrees from Oklahoma Christian University (OCU). It was the first ever international MBA programme from the US-based university.
The best two students, Willy Niyonteze and Fabrice Kayihura, were immediately admitted into the prestigious Delta Mu Delta, an international honour society that recognises and reward superior scholarly achievement of students in business administration.
The graduation ceremony took place at Christ Church in Gaculiro, a suburb of Kigali. Education minister Dr Vincent Biruta and John DeSteiguer, the president of OCU presided.
The one-year course consists of seven specialization areas of accounting, finance, project management, leadership, marketing, human resources, health services and general MBA.
DeSteiguer described the graduation as a milestone for future academic cooperation between Rwanda and the university in training transformational leaders to act as ambassadors of their communities and renew the image of Rwanda 20 years after genocide.
“We believe that this international education has equipped graduates with diverse knowledge on how to achieve their dreams but also to help in supporting their families and community in the process of positive transformation,” deSteiguer said.
He applauded Rwandan students in Oklahoma who financially supported areas that were affected by a tornado that hit communities near their university.
“Human resource empowerment is a key pillar in Rwanda’s vision 2020. I therefore applaud OCU in collaboration with the government for offering scholarships and quality education to our students which we believe will help in transforming our nation and ease Rwanda’s journey towards our vision” said Biruta.
He added that the government, together with the team from Oklahoma, will again select students who the government will sponsor basing on national education needs.
Niyonteze said that he felt blessed to join the international honor society and would use the experience to serve his family and nation.
Falcon Ndirima another graduate, said: “Although fees seem high, the cost is worth it. The interval is short and convenient and the final benefits from the course are overwhelming. I thank the government and the University for bringing this opportunity to us.”
OCU has been admitting 15 Rwandan students annually for both undergraduate and post-graduate programmes focusing on science subjects.
The fee for the MBA program varies from Rwf 6.4 million to Rwf 8 million on 50% university scholarship.