When post-graduate students report for class on September 13, 2021 for the 2021\2022 academic year, among them will be Ms Tania lnnocente Bellard who has enrolled for a Master of Education Degree in Educational Management.
“I cannot describe the excitement I had yesterday after arriving in this beautiful country and entering the gates of UB as a student again,” said an elated Ms Bellard during a short ceremony Vice Chancellor, Professor David Norris, organised to officially welcome her to the University of Botswana.
A native of the Praslin Island, the second largest Island of the Seychelles archipelago, Ms Bellard graduated from the University of Botswana as the 2019 Valedictorian. Professor Norris would later during his visit to Seychelles for the Agency for National Human Resources Development [ANHRD] Public Awareness Session, offer Ms Bellard a scholarship to study a Master’s Degree of her choice at the University of Botswana. The scholarship covers programme-based tuition fees, book allowance, living allowance and accommodation.
Professor Norris announced the scholarship award at a meeting with the ANHRD Chief Executive Officer hosted in Seychelles on February 25, 2020. The meeting was also attended by the Principal Secretary of the Ministry of Tertiary Education and Human Resource Development, Dr Linda Barallon, as well as the Head of the Seychelles Institute of Teacher Education and Director, Rosianna Jules. Ms Bellard attended the meeting following a special invitation.
Ms Bellard said she would forever be grateful because such was an opportunity of a lifetime. She thanked Professor Norris for awarding her the scholarship as well as other members of staff who facilitated her admission, registration, travel and smooth settling at UB.
“So far, I am very happy with everything, including accommodation. I am proof that the University of Botswana does value its students' hard work. This is also evident in the various scholarships the university offers students,” said Ms Bellard. She further added that “I am happy to serve as an ambassador for UB. I will readily be at the disposal of the University for marketing or any other activities. I am going to make the most of this scholarship”.
Earlier on when welcoming Ms Bellard back to Botswana, Professor Norris said he was excited that she decided to come back for her post-graduate studies because it meant that the University of Botswana was among highly recognised institutions internationally.
He said Ms Bellard was a true University of Botswana ambassador and that she was exemplary not only in Seychelles but in many other places. Consequently, Professor Norris expressed his desire to visit Seychelles once again to get more Seychellois students to UB. He observed that Ms Bellard made the right choice to come to the University of Botswana because it was recognised by international ranking bodies as one of the leading research institutions globally.
Responding to Dean of the Faculty of Education, Professor Lily Mafela’s question on how other graduates from University of Botswana were doing in Seychelles, Ms Bellard was happy to report that they were all employed and doing well in their different careers. Ms Ballard said the Seychelles government was also happy to have been sending students to the University of Botswana because of its international ratings.
Dean of the School of Graduate Studies, Professor Agreement Jotia also encouraged Ms Bellard to make the most of her scholarship by pursuing a thesis that would prepare her for PhD. Professor Jotia also advised her to explore all possibilities and maximize any opportunity coming her way while she was still young. He said Ms Bellard was strategically poised to serve as an ambassador in the University of Botswana’s drive to increase its post-graduate enrolment. Professor Jotia further promised to give Ms Bellard all assistance she might need and expressed confidence that given her calibre she would be able to complete her studies without any major hiccups.