The Vice-Chancellor of Mount Kenya University (MKU) in Kenya, Prof. Deogratius JAGANYI, and Mr. Georg Willet, Vice President of lebenshilfe Tirol in Austria, signed a letter of intent to offer opportunities to graduates of the Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) programs at both Mount Kigali University and MKU. The signing occurred at MKU Union Towers in Nairobi and was attended by Dr. Christopher Mutembei, the director of the Center for Professional Development.
The agreement opens doors for qualified graduates to work as Nursing Professionals in Austria, subject to meeting specific conditions. Eligible graduates must have successfully completed the BScN program, finished a one-year internship, learned German, and obtained a valid nursing practice license. Lebenshilfe organization, in cooperation with TYE Pathways Limited, will provide pre-departure training and relevant information from Austria to ensure a smooth transition for the selected candidates.
Lebenshilfe will also assist in obtaining visas and work permits, cover travel expenses, secure suitable accommodation, and ensure equitable salaries on par with Austrian or EU citizens. The German language examination fee will be reimbursed for successful candidates in the first cohort.
Mount Kigali University and MKU will actively support the graduates’ preparation. They will organize German language classes to meet the required B1 level qualification and provide additional training to address any curriculum gaps in Nursing. Both universities will verify the possession of a current, valid nursing practice license and completion of essential Pre-Departure training, among other prerequisites.
After signing the letter of intent, Vice-Chancellor Prof. Deogratius expressed delight about the collaboration, stating, “We are thrilled to cooperate with an esteemed organization from Austria to enable our nursing graduates to work in Austria. This partnership makes both institutions very special, and we eagerly anticipate its growth and future success.”
Mr. Willet echoed the sentiment, calling it a remarkable opportunity to welcome 60 talented students from Kenya and Rwanda. He expressed happiness at the signing of the letter of intent, considering it a significant milestone in both the Austrian Health Sector and their organization. He expressed optimism in achieving the goals set forth and commended the two institutions as highly professional partners.
This partnership marks the first step towards creating a positive impact and fostering lasting relationships between nursing professionals in Kenya, Rwanda, and Austria.
The acting Vice-Chancellor of Mount Kigali University, Dr. Martin Kimemia, welcomed the news and believes it will be key to the professional growth of the graduates and the advancement of nursing and healthcare in Rwanda and Austria. He said, “It exemplifies international cooperation and knowledge-sharing, leaving a positive and lasting impact on both institutions and their nations.” Highlighting the advantages, he added, “This opportunity will expose them to a diverse group of healthcare professionals in a highly developed country, granting them invaluable experience. When they return to their home countries, they can share and apply this knowledge, elevating local healthcare practices. The partnership will also create an excellent platform for joint research in the nursing profession between the universities and our Austrian counterparts. We shall explore innovative nursing approaches, exchange best practices, strengthen academic ties, and improve healthcare systems in our countries,” said Dr. Kimemia.
Mount Kigali University, formerly Mount Kenya University Rwanda Campus, gained full accreditation in April this year. The name change was approved through a cabinet resolution chaired by His Excellency, President Paul Kagame. The School of Nursing is one of its centers of excellence with state-of-the-art facilities. The university is now an autonomous international institution of higher learning, and not a cross-border institution.