Meet Landouard Habiyaremye, a highly dedicated Director of Academic Advising who has been with Kepler College for eight years. With a deep passion for teaching and a strong belief in student-centered learning, Landouard strives to make a positive impact in higher education. He has faced various challenges along the way but remains committed to transforming education. His message to potential students is clear: take the leap, apply, and be part of the transformative journey that Kepler College offers.
Q1: Who is Landouard Habiyaremye?
A1: Beyond my professional life, I appreciate catching up on news, conversing with family, friends, and neighbors, and engaging in community services. My natural empathy helps me understand others’ perspectives. I take joy in my students’ personal, academic, and professional triumphs, considering their victories as my own. For example, collaborating with former students or receiving thoughtful gifts like Sidney Poitier’s “The Measure of a Man”, underscores my commitment to their success.
Q2: Where does your passion for teaching come from?
A2: My passion for teaching originates from two main experiences. Firstly, my high school biology teacher, who broke complex topics into smaller, understandable parts, sparking active participation and love for the subject, often using straightforward examples we could understand. Secondly, a college internship at the district level involving community mobilization for healthier behaviors. This involved educating the community to change mindsets and counter ignorance, affirming my belief in education as a societal transformation tool, and fueling my desire to become an educator.
Q3: How did you discover Kepler College and what made you want to apply for a role here?
A3: I learned about Kepler through its early course facilitators and local job platforms. I was drawn to its mission of transforming the lives of the young generation through reinvented education, which led me to apply for a course facilitator role.
Q4: What are some of the challenges facing higher education in Rwanda and the region?
A4: Challenges include not putting students at the center of the learning process, gaps in effective teaching methodologies, having much reliance on existing information or limits to imparting knowledge, language barriers in instruction, and limited technology integration in the learning process.
Q5: What steps can be taken to address these challenges?
A5: Solutions include adopting learner-centered curricula, using real-life case studies, promoting independent learning, improving language policies, and integrating technology in learning, balanced with opportunities for cognitive skill development. Teachers should not be the only source of knowledge; we are in the era of information, and students should be taught how to learn, ask the right questions, find the right information, and develop critical thinking necessary to challenge existing information or solve the problems society is facing.
Q6: Briefly describe the Kepler College learning model and how it prepares students for the 21st century workforce.
A6: Kepler College combines blended learning and competency-based approaches, implemented via strategies like flipped classrooms, self-paced learning, frequent feedback cycles, debate and discussions; goal setting, and group activities. This model enables students to develop 21st-century skills while actively participating in their own learning. It emphasizes practical application, critical thinking, and collaboration, preparing students for the demands of the modern workforce.
Q7: As a facilitator, how has working at Kepler College impacted your teaching career or personal development?
A7: I have evolved from being just a teacher to a learning facilitator, working closely with students and monitoring their progress. When running academic advising meetings or coordinating academic advising work, my team and I are always interested in devising strategies that can help us provide holistic academic support to students. This approach has greatly contributed to my personal and professional development as an educator.
Q8: As a teacher, why would you describe teachers as important to our communities?
A8: Teachers lay the foundation for individual and societal development. We are what we are because of the invaluable work our teachers do at all levels of our learning journey, inspiring dreams and pushing human potential to build capacity for both present and future generations.
Q9: What words of encouragement can you share with/to students preparing for university or applying to Kepler College
A9: Students preparing for university or considering applying to Kepler College should prioritize acquiring 21st-century skills. Kepler offers an environment where students actively engage in learning, develop relevant competencies, and gain employability skills. With comprehensive support services and a dedicated community, taking the first step to join Kepler is an opportunity for transformative education that shapes your future. As the famous saying by Lao Tzu goes, “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”
Learn more about Kepler College at: www.keplercollege.ac.rw