Pauline Makoma – Miss Rwanda Utah 2020
Pauline Makoma resides in Salt Lake City where she moved with her family 3 years ago. She was born and raised in Rwanda where she completed her high school and early education. She is a sister to 5 amazing brothers and takes pride in being the only girl in the family. Growing up being the only girl has taught her how to be disciplined, organized, selfless and hardworking.
Pauline is a web developer and is currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in software engineering. She is passionate about learning new technologies and sharing her knowledge with others. She spends two hours every Saturday at the Utah Refugee Education and Training Center helping younger adults to code and does mentor young emerging Rwandan developers. She has also served for a year as a board member at United African Women of Hope which is a non-profit organization based in Utah that helps aide women with a refugee background that resettled in that area.
Her competitive nature and leadership skills helped her serve as her swim team captain for 3 consecutive years and has represented her school debate team in cross country competitions during her high school time. During her free time, she enjoys reading books, exercising and watching movies. She also likes posing for pictures for fun.
She hopes to one day open a career exploration center for young African girls with a focus on STEM. “There is still a stigma around what types of careers black girls can get into. My goal is to create a space where girls can come and realize they can be anything, that their dream to become something big isn’t a pipe dream”
Rwanda is a relatively stable East African country, and easily accessible from Kenya and Uganda. It is relatively easy, safe and simple to travel around. It is landlocked, surrounded by Uganda to the north, Tanzania to the east, Burundi to the south, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the west.
Rwanda is not only the land of a thousand hills, but also a country rich in flora and fauna and stunning natural beauty in its scenic rolling and breathtaking green savannah. The country hosts some rare species of animals like the silverback mountain gorillas as well as unique birds and insects in the tropical forest of Nyungwe.