Two talented law and diplomacy students, Catherine Bartenge and Olive Nyawira from the University of Nairobi, are this year’s recipients of the African Leadership Centre summer scholarships at King’s. The three weeks they have spent in London on the Law and Diplomacy summer programme has enabled them to further develop their knowledge, get an international perspective on issues they have been studying back in Kenya and inspire them to take their studies further.
Olive has just completed an LLB while Catherine is studying for a master’s in Development Studies at the University of Nairobi.
“The content of the course at King’s was a very good fit with my studies at home. Examining the way diplomacy is changing international relations is something essential to understanding development,” Catherine said, adding “our professor was helpful and always willing to answer questions.”
The two scholars were struck by the diversity of the students on the course. “Discussing diplomacy with students from the UK, Italy, Germany and elsewhere shows the different dynamics of international relations and shows the differences in what has worked for them and what has not for Africa,” Olive commented.
Olive’s experience on the summer programme has led her to explore King’s for her LLM, the next step in her law education. “I had been looking at schools online and King’s was high on my list. Seeing the place made me more determined to apply,” she said. ”Getting an education here would definitely make me more employable.” As chair of the Diplomacy Club at the University of Nairobi, Olive also hopes to use her experience at King’s to develop the club further when she gets home.
Catherine plans to apply for an African Leadership Centre fellowship in Peace, Security and Development based at King’s when she returns to Nairobi, motivated by the prospect of mentorship, and the ability to build new networks in the field. “There is so much to learn here,” she said. “I will go back home but know something in me has really changed. I have a new perspective.”