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Alba Iulia
Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Zambian Adventist University graduates first class

Economy Zambian Adventist University graduates first class

Zambia’s minister of education this month urged graduates of Seventh-day Adventist-owned Zambia Adventist University to put their degrees to work in the country, particularly in areas of economic development. Minister Geoffrey Lungwangwa said the graduates’ good academic standing was of little value if they didn’t contribute to society.

“Zambia is in a hurry to develop and cannot afford to have people who think in terms of credentials instead of … service to others,” Lungwangwa told the class of 80 during the September 2 graduation ceremony.

The class is the first to complete officially recognized four-year degree programs at Zambia Adventist University since the Zambian government in 2003 registered the school as an accredited private university.

“This graduation is such an affirmation of the spirit of faith in Zambia,” said Pardon Mwansa, a vice president for the Adventist world church. “The school’s leadership began with nothing but faith and determination to have their own university. This is such a big occasion.”

The school’s roots reach back to 1903, when Adventist missionary W.H. Anderson crossed the Zambezi River from the Solusi Mission in Zimbabwe to establish the Rusangu Mission in Zambia two years later. The mission school soon grew to a secondary school and then, in the early 90s, a ministerial school offering courses in theology and pastoral training.

But the diplomas Zambian students earned at the school were not recognized in the country. Mwansa said many Adventist Zambians, desperate for an education, attended anyway. Others traveled to nearby Zimbabwe or South Africa to earn degrees.

“If you are attacked by a dog, you use any stick you have,” Mwansa said, quoting a popular Zambian adage to describe the situation.

In the mid-1990s, Zambian Adventists — a half a million strong — redoubled their efforts to secure accreditation. Church leaders in the country closed the ministerial school to better focus their efforts on planning a university. They added more degree programs, hired qualified teachers, spruced up their facilities and applied for accreditation. They also submitted expansion plans that included the construction of more classrooms and a library, then invited the government to keep tabs on their progress.

During his remarks, Lungwangwa commended the fledgling university for offering a wide range of general education courses that would equip students for service beyond graduation. He said teacher-training programs such as the one ZAU offers encourage lifelong learning and help keep education in the country from stagnating.

Lungwangwa was accompanied by David Kenneth Kaunda, who led Zambia to independence in 1964 and served as the country’s president until 1991. Until his election, Kaunda worked as a teacher and emphasized educational development in Zambia throughout his presidency. Kaunda spoke highly of the quality of education ZAU offers.

During the ceremony, ZAU vice-chancellor Mwenda Mulundano thanked the Zambian government for its support of the development of education in the country. He then urged the government to go further by extending benefits such as jobs and state scholarships to ZAU students and graduates. ZAU is one of six private universities in Zambia.

Zambia Adventist University is located in the country’s Southern Province about 120 miles south of its capital, Lusaka, and nearly 200 miles north of Victoria Falls.

Source: Adventist News Network


  1. there are so many tuntemba universitys in zambia.just go to graduates.com and you have to sift through so many before you reach unza

  2. What we call universities in Zambia do not even march technical colleges or institutes in Western countries like Australia. No credible university was granted university status overnight in Western countries. These universities had to prove their way after a good number of years. Accreditation for universities look at key issues such as physical infrastructures for the college or institute, number of properly qualified instructors, library collections and so on. So if they use the word university, they will call them as university initiatives.

    Anyway, let’s rejoice that different groups of people are now realising that we need more universities in Zambia. More universities are yet to come and some that may be called universites now will not survive after thirty years from now if Jesus tarries.

  3. Our mentality to look down upon what we start in Zambia as being inferior always will continue to haunt us. Zambia is endowed with very intelligent students that our education system has failed to assimilate. UNZA and CB Universities have for years kept out well qualified students because of limited number of places available. Introduction of private universities such as Northrise and Adventist should not cause nausea by many of our people. The minimum requirement in most universities worldwide is 5 or 6 “O” levels. Many students are excluded by the two government universities despite meeting the minimum criteria.

  4. ctd.Admittedly, private schools that are being started cannot meet all requirements for their status but they should be encouraged to start from somewhere. Our colleges have been for years looked down upon but comparing to other countries they are universities in their own right. Graduates from our colleges have topped in many of those countries you consider to have “real” universities. It is time we appreciated our students that are very competitive anywhere and everywhere.

  5. Zambia, zambia and zambians. Please when will we change, as is always repeated: “Rome wasn’t built in a day”. I see comments from guys like ‘visionary’, if you are not part of the solution to what you call inferior universities, then you sure are the only problem.
    Since you know so much about what a university is supposed to be, and you have noticed that someone is doing it wrong. Come home and help correct the situation,so that we can proudly say Zambia has ‘those international standard universities.’

  6. What are you talking about? I have had enough of the same for a long time, give me a break. A University without a Big library and a computer lab. Don’t take me for a ride. I DON’T CARE ABOUT THE NUMBER OF BUILDINGS, BUT I DO CARE ABOUT ABOUT THE LIBRARY AND THE COMPUTER LAB. THESE ARE IMPORTANT AND ESSENTIAL FOR ANY PLACE OF HIGHER LEARNING.(students must spend time in the library and and on research projects than depend on coping notes from the instructor) PUT THESE IN PLACE AND I WILL BE PROUD OF YOUR DEGREES.

  7. Some people will never appreciate what is theirs. They will always peep in their neighbour’s yard and admire the possessions he/she has. They never realise that they have the same potential to do better and have their own possessions. Go to ZAU and spend three/four years, you will never come back the same. Elegant buildings dont mean anything if the students dont get the desired learning outcomes – SPIRITUAL, PHYSICAL, SOCIAL AND MENTAL aspects. ZAU offers that. Where else will you find that in Zambia? If you have no facts do not condemn because some day you will be forced to swallow your own bitter words. God bless you comment no. 10.

    • Its interesting. What is true about humans is that, the only better thing is what one has. ZAU has UNZA trained lecturers. If UNZA is not a university to train people then ZAU is bad. Appreciate UNZA graduates then ZAU is competitive institution.

  8. pipo lets change the way we talk about our country,lets be proud of it like Americans about there country in everything the fact your families are blessed to send you out to study don’t think those left here in Zambia studying on these same called tuntemba universities are useless there are trying by o means to perfect there lives and future,than them giving up doing nothing,no everyone as money like some of you,so always remember God is the giver and the taker, if you humble yourself God will lift you up but when you lift yourself up God will humble you.o the universities are fine in Zambia

  9. i trained at a qualified and recognised government institute in zambia. When i went to further my studies in another african adventist intitute, i was told to make up on my diploma to qualify for entery to study for the intended award. Surprising enough the credentials i obtained at this adventist institute were more than enough to give me entery into one of the universities in UK.. Our church gives quality education in a simple organised and friendly atmosphere. after all , all you need most is JESUS . i recommend you tAstE the ZAU.

  10. ZAU is one of the best in the world. With our poverty we will do it.Whether u like it or not. God is with us. Till we get to the top and reign with Him.


  12. Having gone through rusangu university made a difference in my life. the spiritual aspect make the university so unique because it touches yo inner soul.

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