Six Rwandan Scholars who have been working this summer at the UNL Panhandle Research and Extension Center will give a final presentation of their summer work on July 27.

The presentation will start at 2 p.m. in the Bluestem Room at the Panhandle Center. It will be open to the public. Each student will give a short presentation on their summer research.

The Rwandan students have been working and learning at the Panhandle Center since mid-May. They will return to the Lincoln campus at the end of July. They have been housed at Western Nebraska Community College dormitories, and also paired with local host families in the local community.

The scholars study in Lincoln during the academic year. This is the second academic year that Rwandans have been welcomed to the UNL College of Agricultural Sciences (CASNR) as CUSP Scholars. CUSP stands for CASNR Undergraduate Scholars Program.

In 2015, CASNR welcomed the first Cohort of seven CUSP Scholars, followed by an additional 49 in 2016 for a total of 56 scholars. CASNR is positioned to host up to 180 Rwandan students over the next eight years. They are pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Integrated Science that is focused on conservation agriculture, entrepreneurship, leadership, and innovative thinking.

According to the CASNR Dean’s office, “These scholars represent the talent needed to move Rwanda’s agricultural sector forward. They have committed to return to Rwanda upon graduation to serve in critical areas across research, extension, and training.”

The students include:

Didier Ndenga, a freshman pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Integrated Sciences. He is mostly interested in Mechanized System Management, which is his minor and area of concentration. Didier is working for Integrated Weed Management Specialist Nevin Lawrence.

Germain Intwari, a freshman integrated sciences major with a concentration in plant pathology. Rwanda, as other countries within the equatorial region, is experiencing crop yield reductions due to plant diseases. Germain is working for Plant Pathologist Bob Harveson.

Joviale Uwase, a freshman student majoring in Integrated Science, with a concentration in Mechanized Systems and Management. Joviale is working for Soil and Nutrient Management Specialist Bijesh Maharjan.

Liliane Umuhoza, a freshman in Integrated Science major with a concentration in irrigation. Liliane is working for Alternative Crops Breeding Specialist Dipak Santra.

Peace Munyana, a sophomore majoring in integrated science with a minor in agronomy. Peace is working for Dry Edible Bean Breeding Specialist Carlos Urrea.

Tonny Ruhinda, a freshman pursuing a degree in Integrated Sciences with a minor in mechanized systems management. Tonny is passionate about irrigation technology so as to develop irrigation systems in his country. Tonny is working for Soil and Nutrient Management Specialist Bijesh Maharjan.

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