- February 20, 2023
The Rwandan Students Association at the University of Nebraska Lincoln (UNL) hosts a gala in the honor of Heroes Day and to share the rich and vibrant culture of Rwanda with the wider Nebraskan community.
The event was held on Saturday, February 18, 2023, through music, dance, and other cultural
As the last cohort of Rwandan students organized this year’s event, it also marked the last occasion of its kind. Nevertheless, the gathering successfully brought together Rwandan students, Friends of Rwanda, and other members of the Nebraska community to celebrate and honor Rwandan heroes and celebrate Rwanda’s rich culture. The event was graced by several notable guests, including Dr. Ronnie D. Green, the Chancellor of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Maj. Gen Daryl L. Bohac, Adjutant General of Nebraska
National Guard, and Lt. Col. Raoul Bazatoha, the Defense Attaché representing a delegation
from the Embassy of Rwanda in Washington D.C. and other officials of Nebraska State and the
core team of Professors at UNL.
Defense attaché Lt. Col Raoul Bazatoha representing Ambassador Mathilde Mukantabana took through the audience the history of different categories of heroes and how they are meaningful to the history of Rwanda. Calling on students to have behaviors that reflect heroes, he echoed the message of H.E President Paul Kagame about heroism “Heroism is not limited to a fewindividuals, but rather it can be found in the everyday actions of ordinary people who strive tomake a positive difference in their communities and their country. It should encourage, you,the students, to recognize the potential for heroism within yourselves and to take action towardbuilding a better future for all Rwandans.”
He urged students to identify the potential for heroism within themselves and take steps toward creating a brighter future for all Rwandans. He encouraged them to stand up for what is right, to safeguard the nation, and to establish a legacy of prosperity that will benefit generations. Dr. Ronnie D. Green, Chancellor of the University of Nebraska Lincoln, expressed gratitude for the presence of the Rwandans at the university referring to them as a ‘talented amazing group of young people. He stated, “We have been blessed to have you here, and I have no doubt that
you are going to do great things.”
Tiffany Heng-Moss, the Dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources has been to Rwanda nine times to strengthen the partnership with the Government of Rwanda through the Ministry of Agriculture praised Rwandan students, “They have been verycurious, they have been very passionate about their fields, and they really like to think from asystems perspective. When we think about them on the academic side of things they excel inthe classrooms. In fact, today they had about 94% of graduation rate in four years or lesswhich is really unheard of when you look at students’ success across the United States.”
Japhet Ingeri, the representative of the Rwandan Students Association at the University of Nebraska Lincoln spoke about how Rwandan heroes deserve honor and recognition: “Ourcountry came out of a dark place but we are here today because of the unmatched sacrifices ofmen and women who kept their efforts, resources, and lives to save our future as a nation.”Through music honoring Rwandan heroes, dance, food, and cultural activities, attendees were treated to a taste of Rwanda. The event attracted the community of Nebraska, fostering a friendly and welcoming atmosphere for cultural exchange and friendship-building.
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