Kigali Independent University (ULK) ranks among the best universities in Rwanda that has through upholding high standards of education values, Christian moral values and resilience, helped the young Rwandan generation step out from their painful history of the country, to focus today on a future based on hard work and productivity.
Founded by Prof. Dr. Rwiganba Balinda in 1996, the university has grown to live up to its core values and goals of Integrity, Humility, Determination and Excellence. Today, the university has two campuses (ULK-Kigali and ULK Gisenyi) which have both served the needs of the government in promoting education and producing human resource who have contributed vastly to the countries development in various job position-in both in government and private sector.
Under the guiding motto of ““Science and Conscience”, the university has over the years produced the best human resource in its faculties of Economics and Business Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences, Faculty of Law, and Faculty of Science and Technology.
With this rich background and continued growth of ULK- as a pillar of quality education in higher learning, the university recently (on 21st February 2013) graduated at least 478 students graduated with bachelors’ degrees in various disciplines at the 7th graduation ceremony of Kigali Independent University (ULK-Gisenyi) western campus in Rubavu district.
The 478 graduates were conferred Bachelors’ Degrees Honours in Management, Rural Development, Accounting, Finance, Law, Sociology, Administration sciences and Development Studies. In the group, three graduands (all females- NIYOMBABAZI Phaina, KARUGWIZA Alice and MUKABARAHIRA Jeannine) attained degrees with first class honors, including two from the department of development studies and the other from accounting department.
It is also of great importance to point out the amazing fact that out of the 478 graduates, 226 of them- that is 47.3% are women. Indicating the participation of women in education is a core value of enrolment at ULK.
It was a day of joy for graduates, parents, and teaching staff, at the graduation ceremony at the Western campus of Kigali Independent University (ULK) located in Rubavu district- which also highlighted the climax of the academic calendar and achievements of the institution in the last four years.
More so, it was all smiles for the graduates, who were dressed in royal blue and golden yellow gowns, marching in three procession columns with visible joy on their faces and their hearts as they followed the mace and the national flag bearers- a symbolic sign of success achieved after four years of undergraduate studies.
The occasion was also attended the governor of the western province, Celestin Kabahizi, CEPEGL representatives and members of the board of directors, and wife to the ULK founder, Mrs Balinda; among others.
The colorful graduation ceremony was opened by the Vice Chairperson of the Board of Directors, Prof. Dr. Kalisa Mbanda and graced with the presence of Education Minister Dr. Vincent Biruta, and top officials from local and foreign, public and private institutions.
In his keynote address, as the guest of honor, the Minister of Education Hon. Dr. Vincent Biruta saluted the courage and determination of the graduates and recommended them to demonstrate their capabilities so as to act as solution seekers. The Minister urged the graduated to make sure the increase in number of graduates brings about the increase in job creation rather than joblessness.
“You now have acquired valuable skills which qualify you to compete on the job market, the national guiding principle is that you become job creators not job seekers,” the minister said, pointing out the need for higher institutions to regularly conduct progressive evaluation exercises and employment status of their alumni students so as to determine the relevance of the university courses on the current job market.
On behalf of the graduates, Hamisi Nsabimana who graduated in development studies called on the government to assist in enabling them to upgrade their education saying that learning is a continuous process.
Nsabimana said that the four years ended with great achievements in both education and development of personalities that will be able to stand the test of time, become significant players in creating jobs, community development and nation building, thanks to the good and qualified teaching staff at ULK, who have taught them to be God fearing citizens, goal oriented, and patriotic.
The Founder and President of ULK, Prof. Dr. Rwiganba Balinda thanked the invitees to have honored the function with their presence.
Prof. Balinda expressed his appreciation towards the government of Rwanda, which has put in place constructive policies that have brought about the country development and improved the living standard of nationals.
Prof. Rwiganba Balinda also urged the graduates to uphold professional ethics in the execution of their future duties. He reaffirmed his institution’s commitment to offering quality training aimed at satisfying the population needs in various domains.
Both ULK campuses (Kigali & Gisenyi) as part of the ULK Institution’s mission and vision in Rwanda, have served the purpose of reaching out to many communities in the western province, by providing proximal education services in the western part of the country and community outreach spearheaded by the students and administration.
The numbers of university students enrolling and graduating from the ULK-Gisenyi campus has in seven years since its inception, grown to a total of 3296 students from 2007 to 2013-( while at the Kigali Campus, the numbers have grown to 11,927 from 2002 to 2012)- which is part of the gear towards promoting a competent human resource, with dignity and self reliance of our nation in the future.
At ULK/GISENYI: 3,199 students among whom: 1 649 male students (representing 51%) 1 550 female students (representing 49%), while at the Kigali Campus, 9, 002 students among whom: 3,780 male students (representing 42%) and 5,222 female students (representing 58%).
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