Pestalozzi's first Ugandan student gains EARTH University scholarship

25 June 2013

Two East Sussex based charities, Pestalozzi International Village Trust and Quicken Trust, are delighted with the success of one of their students. Christopher Mujjabi has been awarded a full scholarship to EARTH University in Costa Rica.

Chris MujjabiA few years ago, Christopher Mujjabi was at high school in Kabubbu, Uganda. Chris excelled when he was able to be in school, but he could only attend school intermittently because he had three other siblings and his mother wasn’t able to ensure continuity for school fees for all four of her children.

However, fortune was on his side. Quicken Trust, a charity based in Herstmonceux, found a sponsor to pay for a whole year of education, enabling Chris to complete the Uganda National Education Board ‘O’ level examinations. Chris was then chosen by Pestalozzi, based in Sedlescombe near Hastings, to attend a selection meeting. He undertook further examinations and an in-depth interview and was the first Ugandan student to ever receive a Pestalozzi scholarship.

Chris arrived in the UK in 2011 and has been a popular student at Pestalozzi since then. He recently completed the two year International Baccalaureate Diploma at Sussex Coast College Hastings. While in the UK, he also learnt to play the guitar and performed with his band Pestalozzi Pirates at Hastings Beatles Day.

Recently, EARTH University in Costa Rica was looking to award prestigious MasterCard Scholarships to students from Latin America, the Caribbean and Africa. Four months before the beginning of the academic program, admitted candidates from non-Spanish speaking backgrounds are required to report at EARTH to participate in a Spanish language program. This program precedes the real academic program that begins in mid-January of the following year. It is aimed to orient and hand them with Spanish language immersion and skills needed to be able to understand courses of the full academic program that are instructed in Spanish. This program is part of their full scholarship package as financed by the MasterCard Foundation.

A staff member from EARTH visited Pestalozzi and interviewed Chris in May. Chris enjoyed the opportunity of hosting the visitor and showing her around Pestalozzi and nearby Battle.

Chris Mujjabi arrives at Pestalozzi after a long day at collegeLast Friday, Chris was elated to hear that he had been accepted for the MasterCard Foundation Scholarship studying Agricultural Science and Natural Resource Management at EARTH University. He said, "I am so happy and speechless that I got an acceptance from Earth University on a full scholarship with all my costs, including air fares.” said Chris. "I look forward to taking my continued education in Costa Rica back to Uganda in four years’ time to help develop my country.”

Chris’ EARTH University confirmation said, "You have been selected from among a large group of highly qualified candidates, but you have stood out for your academic preparedness, your determination, your commitment to the community and your potential to become a leader of change and your commitment to the future of the planet we share.” Quicken Trust and Pestalozzi International Village Trust are thrilled to be part of Christopher’s ongoing success story.

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