Leonce Rushubirwa, Ph.D. - Kiswahili Specialist and Lead Instructor
As our curriculum specialist, Dr. Rushubirwa was involved in developing the Kiswahili Learning Centre curriculum. As a lead instructor, he will also be teaching the language and providing oversight on quality and specifications of the course content.
In his native Tanzania, he taught Swahili at the primary, secondary and post-secondary levels. Dr. Rushubirwa graduated in 1992 from University of Dar-Es-Salaam with a Bachelor of Education (Teacher and Kiswahili language double majors). Leonce has a Masters of Education and Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction (Instructional Technology) from Ohio University.
He has taught Kiswahili and Culture at Ohio University, Louisiana State University, Indiana University Bloomington, University of Kansas in USA and University of KwaZulu Natal in South Africa. He is a board member of Chama Cha Ukuzaji Kiswahili Duniani (CHAUKIDU) , an organization that promotes development of Kiswahili Language in the world.
He co-authored with Dr. Alwiya Saleh Omar a Swahili language textbook, Tuwasiliane Kwa Kiswahili (Let's Communicate in Swahili).
Abdulwahid Mazrui, Ph.D. - Lead Instructor, Ottawa
Dr. Abdulwahid Mazrui is the lead instructor in Kiswahili Learning Centre, Ottawa. He has a wealth of practical experience in teaching Swahili as a second language to U.S Peace Corps and currently as an instructor in Carleton University, Canada.
Originally from the Zanzibar Archipelago, Tanzania, Dr. Mazrui obtained his BA in Education from the University of Dar-Es-Salaam, Tanzania, an MA in Applied Linguistics and PhD in Linguistics from Indiana University, US.
He also has a Diploma in African Language Teaching from the Center of African Language Teaching in London, UK. He has taught Swahili in Zanzibar and Arusha, Tanzania, Indiana University and University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign in the US.
Dr. Mazrui is the co-author of a popular Swahili book called, “Swahili: A Complete Course for Beginners”. He speaks Swahili, English, Spanish and basic Arabic.
Irene Mwangi - Kiswahili Instructor
As a Kiswahili Instructor, Irene will work with the rest of Kiswahili Learning Centre team while specifically instructing the 6 years to 12 year old students. Irene is fluent in Kiswahili. She also studied Kiswahili as a course in her undergraduate studies.
Irene is a certified teacher by Teachers Service Commission (Kenya), Alberta Teachers Association and Ontario College of Teachers (Canada). She has a Bachelor of Education degree from Moi University. Her vast teaching experience dates back to 2002 and involves instructing various student age groups from elementary level all the way to high school and diploma (IB) level in Makini School, Kenya.
Irene has also worked with St. Albert Catholic School board as a substitute teacher and Edmonton Public School board (Riverbend Junior High Shool) as a student teacher. In Edmonton, Irene has a wealth of experience working with children in Early Childhood and Education programs.
Francis Wambugu - Manager
Francis steers Kiswahili Learning Centre business development, marketing and student admission operations while also doubling as an instructor. A Kiswahili and other African languages enthusiast, Francis is passionate about the advantages of competency in foreign languages. He is also fluent in Kiswahili and two other languages.
Francis is a registered and practising engineer in the Province of Alberta, Canada and also an MBA graduate(2012), University of Alberta.
Andrew M. Kerandi, Ph.D.. - Manager, Ottawa
Dr. Andrew Kerandi is an accomplished Financial Management and Project Management professional with a wealth of knowledge in the private sector, public institutions and municipal government affairs. He is a valuable addition to Kiswahili Learning Centre's educational development and growth in Eastern Canada. Andrew has worked as a university lecturer in University of Nairobi, Kenya and Algonquin College-Ottawa, Canada. He has also been a financial management consultant for PricewaterhouseCoopers and IBM Canada.
Andrew is widely travelled and well versed in African languages and cultural matters. He obtained his Bachelor of Commerce degree from University of Nairobi, Kenya and his Masters degree from Carleton University, Canada. He holds a PhD in Public Administration, University of Ottawa, Canada.
Hannah Goodwill - Volunteer Liaison
Hannah Goodwill is a staff member at the Kiswahili Learning Centre. In 2015, she spent three months volunteering at primary and special needs schools in Nairobi, Kenya. Being a Volunteer Liaison affords Hannah an opportunity to share with visitors interested in Africa about the realities of communication barriers, her cultural integration journey, and memorable experiences in East Africa.
Hannah is currently pursuing a Psychology degree at MacEwan University, Canada. She plans to visit Africa for a longer tour at a future date.
Tololwa M. Mollel - Cultural Instructor/ Story-sharer
Tololwa Mollel is an author of over 17 internationally published books for the young and the young at heart, in English and in Kiswahili, the national language of his native country Tanzania. Among his books are the award-winning The Orphan Boy, My Rows and Piles of Coins and Big Boy. From Lands of the Night is his latest book, which is also forthcoming in a Kiswahili translation. Tololwa’s books and short stories for adults have been translated into 10 languages including Korean, Serbian, Norwegian, Spanish, and several South African tongues.
Tololwa has also published short stories for adults and essays, and written several plays. With his roots as a theatre actor and dramatist in both Tanzania and Canada, Tololwa is a performer of stories, sometimes solo, and other times with other performers.
In Kiswahili Learning Centre, Tololwa's roles have consisted of assisting in Intercultural training, and contributing Swahili stories for Swahili listeners as part of the Swahili radio program on Kiswahili FM every other Sunday.
Joseph Muchemi - Information Technology Consultant
Joseph has provided consulting services in handling IT needs for the delivery of the Kiswahili program. Mr. Muchemi has vast experience in networking and IT Consultancy with the Government of Alberta for the last 8 years. Previously he was an IT professional in the Republic of Botswana.
Our key objective is to boost learning, comprehension and retention of Kiswahili, other African languages and Intercultural training competencies in our students so that they can beneficially apply it.
Kiswahili Learning Centre is incorporated in Alberta, Canada
Kiswahili Learning Centre concept has been in the making for a decade.
The centre’s origin was inspired by an existing need for Kiswahili and other African language skills, by visitors who are increasingly travelling to Africa for volunteer work, tourism, professional work, business and International careers.