We are very excited to announce that, thanks to a generous scholarship donation from supporters of Imbabazi, we were recently able to send 4 of our older children to study at the renowned Rwanda Tourism University College (RTUC) in nearby Gisenyi. Having graduated from secondary school last year, these 4 took the initiative to find part-time jobs or internships in the meantime while waiting to see if university would be an option for them. Being in the “real world” for a bit not only gave them a host of new skills to put to use at university, but also made them appreciate even more this opportunity to further their education and accomplish their future goals.

RTUC is the first university in Rwanda to focus specifically on tourism and hospitality. Not only is tourism an up-and-coming industry in Rwanda, but many children at the orphanage have an interest in pursuing this field as a career. Mussa Uwitonze (boy on left) & Umuhoza Epiphanie (pink shirt on right) will be studying Travel & Tourism Management, while Claudia Ingabire (girl on left) & Vestine Uwamahoro (striped shirt on right) will be studying Business & Information Technology. They started classes last week and are enjoying it tremendously. Here is what they had to say about their experience so far:

Mussa: “Since childhood I had two choices [to study]: journalism or tourism. Unfortunately I didn’t get a chance to study journalism…so I took the decision to study tourism which I am really liking so much – it is opening doors for my future dream. In fact, tourism is rising in Rwanda and East Africa, this is why I’d like to help and do customer relations, which is a great opportunity to improve here in my country and elsewhere. My dream is to start my own tour agency, maybe called “Imbabazi Tours and Safaris” and I always pray so that my dream can come true.

Umuhoza: In my dreams I had a wish of doing tourism but I didn’t think it could come true because there was no tourism university in Rwanda. After hearing about RTUC, I wished I could go but it was very expensive and very hard for a Rwandan family to pay. Now, I am very happy that I was able to come and glad that my dreams are coming true. I thank the sponsors and the Imbabazi Orphanage, and promise that I am working hard to get good marks and gain knowledge.

Ingabire: I have always wanted to be a Technician but I didn’t think it could happen because I didn’t have a sponsor to pay for my university fees. But God helped me to find this scholarship after graduating from secondary school, and I know the sponsors also worked very hard to find for me. BIT is an area that is on the rise in Rwanda and all over the world, which is why I chose this faculty because it will help my future. Now I must do my best and study very hard.

Vestine: I chose to study BIT, and I’m so happy because I didn’t think I would be able to continue in University so I am very surprised and happy that I can. Thanks a lot to the sponsors and Imbabazi Orphanage.