International team of MSB graduate students writes agribusiness proposal for Tanzanian school
Four MBA students in Holly Tapper’s Politics of Leadership in a Global Economy class at Globe University proposed beekeeping as a way to create a brighter future for AIDS orphans near Arusha, Tanzania.
The students, two in Minnesota and two in Slovakia, wrote a proposal for a sustainable agriculture venture that Peace House, a Minnesota non-profit organization, could adopt. Peace House runs a free secondary school near Arusha and seeks to teach its students entrepreneurial business skills to ensure their future livelihood. Since 80 percent of Tanzanians make their living from small-scale agriculture, training the students in sustainable agriculture methods offers great potential benefits.
According to student Meghan Paulson, it was rewarding to conduct this project and encourage self-sufficiency among the Tanzanians.
“I believe it is important to empower these students to develop ideas and to work on things that can enhance their school, their community and themselves,” she said.
Despite the geographical separation, the four students collaborated effectively by e-mailing, using a discussion board and sharing documents. Their research indicated that beekeeping would be viable for Peace House given its mission, available resources and climate. The students incorporated beekeeping practices already used in Tanzania, such as sack gardens and hafirs (a method for collecting rainwater).
Student Maria Remeniusova noted the value in providing non-monetary assistance.
“I think just sending money is not enough; many times the money from charities does not even arrive at the place it should. But this [project offers] real help,” she said.