Following the November 2017 visit of Myanmar by a Providence delegation, Providence Theological Seminary and the Myitkyina Kachin Baptist Association (MKBA) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding “for the benefit of MKBA students.” The MOU was agreed by both parties in February and took effect March 1.
Under the terms of the MOU, Providence will make a MKBA Bursary available to one new student per year, as recommended by the MKBA. The organization has previously sent nine students to Providence, and 18 students from Myanmar—including those currently studying on the Otterburne campus—have graduated from the institution.
“These nine have been serving in different areas of ministry in the community, and we would like to thank Providence for equipping them,” remarked Rev. Guntang La Myen of the MKBA.
The MKBA Bursary is valued at 100 per cent of the international student tuition fee.
During a meeting involving MKBA personnel, Providence President Dr. David Johnson and Seminary Academic Dean Dr. Stan Hamm on November 19, 2017 in Myitkyina, Myanmar, it was quickly apparent that both organizations sought an ongoing arrangement that would make it possible for future MKBA leaders to study at Providence. Recognizing the “unity in Christ that exists between Providence and the Myitkyina Kachin Baptist Association,” the MOU’s draft text read, the agreement would “expand scholarly ties and academic cooperation through the promotion of students.”
The students recommended to Providence by the MKBA will “show evidence of faith in Jesus Christ” and will have received an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution, having attained a minimum GPA of 2.5 in their last two full years of study.
Providence visited Myitkyina, the capital of Myanmar’s Kachin State, to confer an honorary doctorate on Rev. Dr. Samson Hkalam, a 1999 graduate of Providence Theological Seminary. Samson is presently serving as General Secretary of the Kachin Baptist Convention (KBC)—the 400,000-member umbrella group under which the MKBA and its 70,000 members are a part.
Providence looks forward to partnering with the MKBA to equip graduates who will be difference-makers in Myitkyina, throughout Kachin State and in all of Myanmar.