||Jean Paul NIYONKUNDA who studies at his house outside
The youth of Rwanda have said "My parents are poor. I am poor, too. So, there is no hope." This saying is one of the most often heard sayings since I came to Rwanda in December 2012.
Don’t the poor people really have any hope? Yes, they do have.
I met Jean Paul NIYONKUNDA, who visited my office on 15th September 2014. He, a student of ESTB-Busogo School, appealed me to help himself. He continued to say “I have no money to take the national examination and study further more.”
I gave him some advices instead of giving money.
“Don’t beg. Please change your thinking way. Try to get return for your efforts. Work and help your parent farm at day, and study hard at night. When I was young, I was in difficulty the same as you are now. There is a way where there is your will.”
The student came back home in promising me that he will do his best to practice my advices. About 6 months later, he visited and thanked me with bringing the good news of the pass of TVET national examination.
He promised me to study at night-university while he will work ant make money at day. I am sure that he will succeed and contribute to development of Rwanda.
Therefore, we need to change our mindset in place of complaining the poverty as follows;
First; think a little differently and the way will be seen.
There is a saying that "Hope is nowhere." Maybe a lot of people seeing the sentence think that there is no hope anywhere. However, if you think a little differently it may be changed into "Hope is now here." It is an important reason to change our mindset.
It is not without hope because we are poor. In contrast, we are poor because we have no hope.
Second; think positively and it leads to a new power and creativity.
Here, there is a half a cup of water. Some people think that “The cup already is half empty.” and are disheartened. The other people think that “The cup yet is half full.” and take courage. Who is wiser and more successful? The latter, of course
Even though poor, many of the Rwandan youth are studying in university with the help of the government and parents. Thinking this, those students should study harder to pay back the favor to the government and parents.
Third; think flexibly and the efficiency would be maximized.
It was last year when the judges evaluated my students' thesis. Their papers had some interesting new research results. But the judges required that they would be deleted because of beyond research purposes. Eventually the new findings were not put in the papers.
The paper deliberation seemed to be focused on more the form than the content. The over-formalism results in inefficiencies and the loss. In fact, many scientific theories and technologies that we use today were discovered by the flexible thinking. Alexander Fleming's discovery of penicillin is a good example of that.
For Rwanda to attain the self-reliant economic development and poverty reduction, it is essential to change people's mindset. Kicking the stereotypes, Rwandans have better learn to think differently, positively and flexibly. Furthermore, doing is required, not just saying.
The beloved students of UR-CAVM! Hope is now in front of you, not just hopeless. And poverty in the young days may be a source of future success.
Please have a big dream and self- confidence.
You can do if you think you can.
Dr. KI YULL YU,
Professor at UR-CAVM, and KOICA Advisor
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Dr. KI YULL YU(유 기 열, 劉 璣 烈)
Professor of UR-CAVM and Koica WF Advisor,
Room 217, Crop Science Department,
UR-CAVM(University of Rwanda, College of Agriculture, Animal Sciences and Vererinary Medicine),
Busogo Sector, P.O. Box 210, Musanze,
e-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
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