When I completed my doctorate at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, my passion to help my country literally doubled. I was fortunate enough to get employment at Wiley College. I persuaded the athletic director to allow me to start a soccer team and he enthusiastically agreed.
This gave me the opportunity to recruit players from Zimbabwe. My recruitment expanded to academically gifted students who were granted full scholarship to study for four years as long as they maintained required academic status.
In my years of recruiting I have enrolled more than 600 students to study not only at Wiley College but also at Javis Christian College and Houston-Taltson University.
Through my tireless efforts and determination the students also became involved in recruiting their brothers and sisters so they too could have the opportunity to succeed academically. I have always been driven by the desire to share the educational opportunities this country offers with deserving students. This mission instilled in me to always strive to help others as others have strived to help me.
When I visit Zimbabwe and see many young men and women aimlessly working around without any promise, I wish I could fly them here and place them in colleges that are looking for students who really want to learn. There is so much work to be done and some of us do not have enough time to do it or the resources needed to make this happen.
In addition to these personal activities I am involved in an organization some of us founded called “Friends of Baptists in Zimbabwe” 14 years ago. This was a product of what we had seen happening to Sanyati Baptist Secondary school since the departure of missionaries soon after independence in 1980. All the founding members were graduates of this mission establishment. We were able to buy a truck from Japan for the school since they had no working vehicle. We were also able to buy raw materials for the carpentry classes to make benches and desks, as well as, pay school fees for some of the students who were orphaned by the AIDS epidemic.
Then in 2013 we literally struck gold when we were joined by a new member Zeddy Chirombe who introduced us to the World Computer Exchange. Through him we were able to collect over 200 computers. We then decided to expand our help to six schools all over Zimbabwe. So we sent computers to Sanyati Baptist Mission, St Joseph’s Secondary in Rusape, Chitswa Secondary and Chiundu both in Rusape, Gertnel Secondary in Chivhu and G & N Mission in Rutenga. My wife and I visited each of these schools to make sure they each met our demands. So far we are extremely pleased and the schools are very happy with the computers. Since I am serving my last term in office as president of FOBIZ, I want to leave with a bang.
I charge you to join in this noble task of providing opportunities to our country’s future leaders? I truly believe that education is what we all need. Opportunity is what most of our people are seeking. It is up to us to provide what is needed to be of assistance to help themselves and their families. Help us to send computers to 12 schools this coming year. Join us at our Annual General Meeting (AGM) on November 26 in Dallas, Texas.
Doctor S. Masenda is a US Nominee for ZAA Lifetime Achievement Award.