Monday, 12 November 2012

Rwanda : Umutara Polytechnic University leads in funding entrepreneurial projects

Umutara Polytechnic University leads in funding entrepreneurial projects Rwanda : Umutara Polytechnic University leads in funding entrepreneurial projects
Some university grandaunts listening to a trainer on monitoring and evaluation of projects 
Following the collaboration with the Dutch – funded SPARK project, Umutara Polytechnic University is funding University students in different business projects.
According to University officials, the project was initiated at the University purposely to lead other institutions of higher learning in the country to bridge the gap of unemployment among University graduates.
Moses Tumusime, the coordinator of SPARK project told said that over hundred students have so far been funded to run their projects.
“The project targets University finalists who present their competitive business proposals. We receive them and evaluate those that out-compete others. Over one hundred students have been funded and are running their businesses well,” he said.
He added that, the five-year project will see thousands of university graduates become self employed.
“Apart from capacity building lessons offered to students by public institutions, this is the only pioneer institution that is directly funding students’ projects. This project will see thousands of Umutara Polytechnic graduates becoming job creators other than job seekers.” He emphasized.
In an exclusive interview, the University rector, Dr. James Gashumba lauded the Dutch group that funds the project.
“We thank the Dutch group that funds this project. We are glad that we are directly facilitating our students to become good entrepreneurs. We have had a number of applicants and their projects have already been registered by Rwanda Development Board,” he said.
Dr. Gashumba added that the project funds students’ projects ranging from a tune of one to four million francs.
“We are proud that the impact has been successful. We have had an undertaking agreement with them (students) and this money will be repaid gradually without any interest even when the project closes doors,” he added.
Charles Tumusime, a fourth-year student whose stationary business was funded, thanked the University and SPARK project for guiding them to become self employed.
“I was funded with Rwf4m to start up a stationary business after my project was approved…we are extremely pleased that we are not job seekers like many of other university graduates. It is a pleasure that the University worked hard to promote entrepreneurship amongst us,” he said.


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