NORTHRISE UNIVERSITY UPDATE
September 18, 2018
Dear Northrise Family,
The Northrise University Board of Regents (BOR) has had a very busy first half of 2018. We just completed our August board meeting, and wanted to provide a brief update and share some of the major successes, challenges, and priorities identified for the remainder of 2018 and into 2019. The Board of Regents is providing guidance and governance alongside NU leadership and its committed supporters. With your prayerful support we will manage the critical issues at hand and future challenges and continue to support Moffat and Doreen Zimba in fulfilling the vision God gave them many years ago.
There are many highlights to-date and important challenges we face that have been the focus of the BOR this year. Below are just a few to share with you now for immediate attention.
The Northrise University School of Nursing curriculum approval by the Zambia Higher Education Authority (HEA) is a major highlight this year and we congratulate NU leadership in persevering through this process. The first cohort of 23 nursing students started classes in August and recruiting for January 2019 has begun. Praise God for this vital program for NU and the nation of Zambia.
Capital Projects and Fundraising Priorities
With the expected enrollment growth, driven primarily by the Nursing School and lack of availability in our existing dormitory (we are at full capacity today-72 students), it is clear the construction of a new dormitory is our first priority. Our immediate capital fundraising activities need to be focused on raising $1.5M-$1.7M to construct the new dormitory. The new two story dorm will house 132 students and follow the general design of the Campus Center. We are in the final development phase of the design with our architect and expect we will complete the design in September. The new dorm will be the first of four dormitories to be built on the campus in the next 7-8 years.
Northrise needs your continued commitment. Would you pray about your personal contribution to help Northrise raise the funds to build this dormitory and empower more students? This is truly God’s work.
Schools of Agriculture and Engineering
Efforts are underway to raise capital funds, primarily with Foundations, for a new classroom building for the Schools of Agriculture and Engineering. These efforts will continue with Foundations while our full focus and energy is devoted to fundraising for a new dormitory. The construction of the new dormitories will support our recruiting efforts for all new programs in the future. On campus housing is critical to student recruitment and retention and reaching our goals for 2020 and beyond.
A commitment to fund the construction of the Alumni House on campus has been received. The BOR has decided to delay construction of the Alumni House until dorm funding has been raised and dorm construction started in order to maintain a full focus on the dormitory project.
Other Important Updates
Nursing and Other Program Accreditation
The BOR Academic Committee has supported the Nursing Program accreditation effort, established the NU Academic Senate, will be important in establishing the Schools of Agriculture and Engineering, and later on, a School of Education. HEA approval of existing NU majors and new programs is a major challenge ahead for NU.
The BOR has benefitted significantly from the refinement of our financial reporting system. Frederick Mulenga, NU’s Financial Controller, with the guidance and contributions of Dave Murray, has largely completed the task and the on-going financial system is working well and offers a vast improvement. The BOR Finance/Audit Committee continues to drive financial accountability and all of us supporting Northrise University can be assured of the quality of our financial reporting system for Northrise University and its affiliates. The audit of Northrise University’s financial statements for 2017 has been completed.
Analysis and discussion regarding current Northrise Farm operations, water management for the farm (and campus), and longer term strategic direction for Northrise Farms, has been a major focus for the BOR in 2018, helped by a better understanding of the farm financials. Northrise Farms is important to Northrise University so we will strengthen our farm operations, right-size the farm, focus on the commercial programs that we can operate profitably, and use the farm as a training environment for the new School of Agriculture. We will also emphasize utilizing the farm to provide food for the operation of Northrise University, which is important today, but will be more important as NU grows student population, and staff/faculty. There are opportunities to partner with known commercial farm operations, and we will continue our discussions with these entities through Northrise Enterprises.
High Priority Projects
The BOR with the leadership of Dr. Zimba has established a living document of high priority projects for NU which is reviewed at each board meeting to provide focus and priority for NU’s operating leadership and the BOR.
Projects may be related to ongoing facility maintenance, leadership development, process improvement and capacity-building for the future, major strategic priorities, key fund-raising activities, critical planning efforts, etc.
The quarterly review of high priority projects provides the BOR a template to provide direction to NU, the Board of Trustees, and Northrise University Initiative which hopefully keeps us all better-focused and working more effectively together.
I personally want to thank all of you who continue as major supporters of Northrise University. You continue to give generously of your time, talents, and treasures. Without you this Kingdom work in Ndola, Zambia would not be possible. God has continued to bless Northrise and its leadership, and we continue to honor Him for the privilege of serving in this transformational ministry. The lives of so many young men and women have been transformed as have the lives of their immediate family, extended family, and their community. And all of this began with a young couple in Zambia saying “yes” to be obedient to HIS calling and the vision God gave them to empower the people of Zambia… one student at a time.
Chair, Board of Regents