Charles N. Waigi '72
2012 Bicentennial Medalist

In recognition of your distinguished achievement in rural education, Williams College is proud to honor you with its Bicentennial Medal.

Few young men raised in rural Kenya find their way to Williams and then to the Woodrow Wilson School. Your doing so came about through the support of many, most fundamentally your father Jeremy, who held high educational aspirations for you and your siblings. Having reached the mandatory retirement age in your career as a public servant advancing local economic development, you and your educator wife Teresia, used your pension funds to found a school in your village of Limuru. Beginning with just one student in your back yard, Jeremy Academy, as it is called, now serves five hundred children in kindergarten through eighth grade, many of them with mental or emotional challenges. Support from your proud Williams classmates and others has recently helped you to build the facilities needed to take in boarders. As spectacular as the growth in numbers has been the rise in academic achievement. Jeremy outperforms all schools in its region on national tests, and one hundred percent of its graduates go on to secondary school, compared with the national rate of ten percent. And not content to transform just your own village, you now also serve as chair of the Asante Africa Foundation, dedicated to expanding educational opportunities throughout Kenya and Tanzania.

For more information about Charlie Waigi, and to read the glowing introduction given him by Econ. Professor Ken Kuttner on Convocation weekend, click here to see his classmate bio.  And click here to read more about his Jeremy Academy.