Student Spotlight: Benjamin Mukumbya
Below is the story of a talented international student that will be graduating this Spring. We are so proud of Benjamin and the great experiences that he is pursuing!
Where did you grow up? Tell us about your home and your family.
I grew up in the slums of Katwe in Uganda. My home country is a particularly beautiful place, no wonder it is called “the pearl of Africa”. The loving hearts of an alluring and hospitable people make Uganda a particularly great place.
My biological family is an imbroglio unit. I did not have the luxury of growing up in a family with a mom, dad, and siblings until I was about 12 years old. Robert and Sarah Katende grafted me into their family. The Katende family is technically the family that nurtured me.
How did you come to Northwest? Why did you choose NU?
I normally tell people that Northwest chose me. Like David in the Bible, I was busy working on my chess with coach Elliott Neff (CEO of chess4Life), when Robert Katende, Phiona Mutesi, Elliott Neff, and myself visited Northwest University. After a rather interesting conversation with the president of Northwest University in his office, Dr. Joseph Castleberry offered to give me a tuition scholarship. I was excited and I did not know what to say. My journey at Northwest University started the first day I visited campus.
What is your favorite NU memory?
I would have to say the day I was offered the tuition scholarship is still my favorite memory. For one, the NU Choralons performed for us and I felt very special. I met Kimani Nyambura – a very good friend to this day. But seriously, how often do you meet college presidents who hand out scholarships without checking your resume?
What is next for you after graduation? What are your plans for after Duke? What do you hope to do with your degree?
Yes. I am graduating and I am planning to enjoy the summer first. I got accepted to a master’s program in Global Health at Duke University and I am working on transferring to North Carolina in this coming Fall. I do not know my plans after Duke yet. I take life as a one-step journey. I want to eventually get in Medical school where I hope to become a neurosurgeon one day.