This is a year of mega milestones for Northrise! It’s a momentous insertion in a beautiful story God is crafting for the university. Just the last six months have seen impressive landmark developments take place; the long awaited Campus Centre has been opened, new programs have been added to the university’s academic repertoire and numbers have gone up notably for both students and staff.
The completion of the Campus Centre, whose dedication was held on June 4, 2016, marks an upward shift in the business operations of Northrise University. The newly opened facility will not only provide administrative convenience, it will make a business statement and bolster the image of Northrise. “It’s a promise of a new beginning,” Jeff Goble, a member of the Northrise Board of Trustees, rightly referred to the opening of the Campus Centre in his address at the dedication ceremony. Moving all operations to main campus holds promise for a number of things:
• Being in one place will improve collaboration between various university functions
• Monitoring and evaluation of services will be more effective
• The university will be more marketable because of a more attractive campus image
• The move will make it easier to manage and develop more student activities
• Future developments on site will also be easier to manage
In addition to the above mentioned improvements, the steady growth of operations at main campus will also affect the social-economic demographics of the surrounding Twapia and George compounds. Some people from the community will find employment at Northrise. Others will open up small businesses to serve the growing number of students. Already, a few individuals have invested in boarding houses in anticipation of student accommodation needs. Northrise’s existence is a real promise to positively affect students, surrounding communities and the nation of Zambia.
June 4, 2016 was a day of double celebration; prior to dedicating the Campus Centre, the Northrise community kick-started the jubilations with the 9th graduation ceremony, celebrating the achievements of the class of 2016 and the university’s consistent contribution to Zambia’s workforce for nearly a decade. One student at a time, the local industry continues to be “Northrised” with graduates of a Christocentric kind of excellence. This year’s graduation procession started with the Northrise choir leading the audience in singing the Zambian and American national anthems, a perfect acknowledgement to the two leading countries in the propagation of the Northrise vision. Dr. Zimba, the University President, further highlighted the strong partnership between the peoples of the two nations in his opening speech. He then went on to emphasize, among other things, the importance that Northrise places on its students and a culture of faith. “Without graduands, we would not have this university. We are here as a testimony of God’s goodness. We believe the future is bright because God is on our side,” he declared. The audience connected with his jubilant feeling with loud cheering, before he concluded his speech with a witty intimation, “You can dance in your heart, its ok!” Cheering from families and friends continued, coming to a climax during the certification of graduands by Mrs. Zimba, the Deputy Vice Chancellor. Before leaving the podium for the valedictorian, Mrs. Zimba offered her congratulations to the now graduates of Northrise and its new partner institution EDUCORE.
Muteto Mwangelwa, a Business Administration graduate, took to the stage and gave a sweeping valedictory speech. He gracefully weaved a reflection on academic struggles and triumphs with anecdotes that highlighted God’s faithfulness. “Nothing will be possible without the Lord,” was Muteto’s declaration after his sharing from Proverbs 3:5-6. Then Charlie Stroupe, the NU Board of Trustees Chairman, picked up from Muteto with encouragements to the graduates, their families and the university community. Charlie shared his own story; from his college days to life events that have taught him to trust God and surrender to taking each step with Him. He emphasized on being intentional and excellent. His message to the 2016 graduates was, “You’re gonna be leaders – you have to be intentional in leadership. Remember that progress is made on the foundation of failures, and that excellence is not a skill but an attitude.” With many other words, Charlie applauded the educational investments of graduates, their families and the global community of Northrise University.
In concluding the day’s celebrations, Ndola Central Bread of Life Church Pastor, Reverend George Chanda, crowned the events with a prayer in which he petitioned God that Northrise University would be a place of salvation and learning.