Back to Rwanda!

I thought that I'd use the blog from our May 2012 study abroad trip to post my thoughts about anything Hamline-Rwanda related, rather than starting yet another. And, I'm thrilled to write that one week from today I will be boarding my flight to Kigali, via Amsterdam.

During the 2012 trip, one of our site visits was to the Gashora Girls Academy, a project of the Rwanda Girls Initiative. My colleague, Kari, and I looked at each other, realizing we had the same thought, and said - words to the effect of - "We've got to get one of these girls to Hamline." Almost a year and half later, I have the honor of traveling to Rwanda to present one of Gashora's recent graduates with a scholarship to Hamline University. I encourage you to view this video to learn more about Gashora!

This is the current plan: We, my traveling companion - Ann Ness, our VP of Marketing and Enrollment Management - and I, will arrive in Kigali on Thursday evening, 7 November. On Friday, we will visit Gashora. On the way back we hope to stop at Ntarama and Nyamata. Ann has never traveled to Rwanda and I can't imagine going and not paying our respects at these memorials. On Saturday, we will meet the recipient's parents and present the scholarship. On Sunday, we will visit the Kigali Memorial Centre and, perhaps, a market. We fly out Sunday evening, back in the Twin Cities on Monday just after noon.

So, a real whirlwind trip. One day over, three days on the ground, a little more than one day back. And, yet, I can't wait. The opportunity to make my third trip to Rwanda is more than I could have dreamed when, in 2009, I first said, "Wouldn't it be great if we (Hamline) could do a study abroad to Rwanda?" Thanks, Kari!

If the hotel Internet is working I will try to post from the journey! Stay tuned!