Agaba Bisengo ’06
Political Science major
Homeland: Democratic Republic of the Congo
The supportive, objective environment at Messiah College helped Agaba Bisengo ’06, a former Rwandan refugee, find the courage to speak about issues of justice and equality in public forums.
Now the political science graduate combines her education and real-life experience to serve displaced persons around the globe.
“I did not have a real family background,” recalls Agaba as she describes the loss of her parents to the Rwandan genocide at age 10. “The trusting relationships and solid stability I found at Messiah gave me ideas of how families are to be,” she said. “Messiah students and faculty turned me around to a reality of life I didn’t know. I have a future. I’m going places.”
From serving as a spokesperson for International Women’s Day through Amnesty International and participation in international conferences, to coaching and counseling recently-emigrated refugees, Agaba engages worldwide audiences in generating greater awareness of the 1994 Rwandan genocide that killed up to one million Tutsis, including her parents. Women refugees and the preservation of human rights, in particular, are closest to Agaba’s heart.
“I have overcome my past and have hope for all women who continue to struggle to attain their goals,” said Agaba, who currently works full-time as a research coordinator for Corporate Executive Board, an organization that provides best practices research and education to the world’s leading corporations and not-for-profit institutions. Agaba also dedicates her personal time to assisting refugees in the Maryland area. Currently, she is helping a recently-emigrated Rwandan woman apply to the University of Maryland’s School of Law.
See Agaba’s incredible story of survival: http://www.messiah.edu/offices/publications/the_bridge/winter06/international/index.html
Posted on August 12th, 2008