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The 6th edition of the East African Debate Championship took place May 17-19, 2019 in Kigali. Gashora Girls Academy sent 2 all-girls teams to the competition, the only all-girls teams of the 29 schools competing. At the end of a full day of debates including 3 preliminaries, Gashora Girls Academy emerged as one of the finalists! Although they didn't take first place against Riviera High School, they came in 2nd and were amazing! Congratulations to the students at Riviera High School, another Rwandan team.

Esther Rugoli is a Junior majoring in Agricultural Biotechnology at Washington State University. Her interest lies in plant breeding, and her long-term goals are to make an impact on traditional farming in Rwanda so that the farmers will have a chance to have access to new varieties that are higher yielding to ensure food security. At WSU she has been exposed to outside classroom experiences. In the spring of 2019, she was awarded the A.Smick Scholarship, where she was able to use the scholarship funds to support and work with a cooperative of potato growers in Rwanda and helped them have access to improved seeds and improve their agricultural production and practices. She is currently working with a wheat breeder Dr. Kimberly Garland-Campbell, and Molecular Geneticist Dr. Camille Steber. Working with Dr. Garland-Campbell and Dr. Steber has been a great opportunity for her to learn more about science applications and disciplines.

She recently was accepted as one of 12 students as a 019 Future Leader with AIARD, the Association for International Agriculture and Rural Development. Additionally, Esther was the only under graduate accepted! She will be attending the AIARD Annual Conference for Future Leaders in Washington, DC.

The Next Einstein Forum (NEF), an initiative of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) recently hosted Africa Science Week in Rwanda. This 35 country tour is led by NEF Ambassadors and local science and technology champions. These seven day events are created to promote STEM education and careers.

We are proud that four or our students were winners of the Essay contest on on to redefine the classroom and make science "cool."

Additionally, Crystal Rugege, the Director of Strategy at Carnegie Mellon Africa, won Woman of the Year for Leadership in Science. Crystal spoke on October 14 at the 2018 Gashora Girls Academy graduation.

Gashora Girls Academy student, Mazimpaka Christelle, defines writing as a tool that can be used by Africans to reach their success. Christelle writes to express herself and believes that science becomes more useful when combined with the reality of life. She appreciates that fact that although she is at a STEM school, GGAST encourages students to find their passions and their voice as part of the whole-girl education. She recently wrote a poem shared below.

A Word To Say

by Christelle Mazimpaka

"A word to a wise is enough" A wise man said

A word is a simple combination of alphabets that brings up a definition

Or a content that is related to what you say

A word matters a lot to us

A word made you and me

A word made the world

Our majesty God himself in heaven used a word for us to be us

A word is crucial and essential

It ensures that you ensured to be exposing

your abilities and inabilities more so one's personality

A word can be good or bad according to how you let it be

And ways you say it

A word can build, strengthen, affect and destroy so many things irrespective of the size or length

It can dismantle, degrade no matter how sweet it sounds

The same a word can heal wounds or rewound them

This word! Brings up conflicts that at times end hurting one another simply a word!

A word might be small according to one's perspective

I have realized that no matter how small something might be

that something is made up of other small things

A word can either come from the deepest point of your heart

or from the back of your mind

A word from thought or word from tongue but still "A word"

These carry different content and concepts

"The problem of many is that we don't listen to understand but to reply."

A word to say should be constructive to bring up wonderful changes

As well as to build up intrapersonal sense

because we are intellectual, educated, respective and beautiful ladies and mothers of tomorrow

A wise man said, "A word to a wise is enough."

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