Francis Mitalo graduated from Moi University in Kenya with an undergraduate honors degree in Tourism Management in 2011. At that time, Francis wanted to work in the tourism industry, especially in the conservation and preservation of destinations and their habitats. He later joined the Kenya Institute of Management and completed a diploma course in Project Management before joining the MEM program. Francis has moved his family to Gunnison to work in the program. The MEM is providing him with the sufficient skill set he needs to run a sustainable business that can improve the quality of life in his home community.
Francis’ path has been rooted in working with various high-level environmental organizations. He previously worked with the Poverty-Environment Initiative (a United Nations Development Program) in collaboration with the Kenya government in Nairobi before joining the Eco2librium Co. in western Kenya. It's during this time that he developed an interest in sustainability projects that deal with energy efficiency. During the four years at Eco2librium, he worked with forest rehabilitation and energy-efficiency projects that focused on improving people’s physical health, economic condition and social lives.
Through the support of Eco2librium, Francis joined the MEM program in fall 2016 to improve his skills and develop his career. Upon completion of the program, he will bring together like-minded partners and friends to commence a for-profit organization that will specialize in greenhouse gas emissions assessments and Environmental Impact Assessments (EIA).
Francis said of the MEM program, “It is a skills-based master’s, which pushes you to learn theory and put those lessons into action.” It was exactly what he was looking for.