Chiluba Musonda (B.B.A ’09, M.P.A. ’12): Finding His Place

From health care to finance, civic service to cultural engagement and more, Kansas City’s businesses and nonprofits are flourishing with trailblazers who have been able to make their mark, thanks to their Bloch education.

The 2017 Bloch Magazine highlights how a few Bloch grads, who came to UMKC from different walks of life, took advantage of Bloch’s diverse opportunities and have since been putting their skills to the test to make an impact across the Kansas City metro area

Photo Credit: Brandon Parigo, Division of Strategic Marketing and Communications

While looking for business schools in the United States, Chiluba Musonda never imagined Kansas City would become his home away from home.

Musonda grew up in Zambia, located in Southern Africa, and confesses that when he was enrolled in the Bloch School’s Bachelor of Business Administration program, he was simply looking to gain acceptance to any business school in the United States.

“Once admitted to the Bloch program, I became aware of the numerous scholarship and internship opportunities,” Musonda says. “This was in addition to the rigorous courses, all of which helped me grow intellectually, personally and professionally.”

Following the completion of his bachelor’s degree, Musonda continued his relationship with UMKC, going on to receive his Master’s in Public Administration in 2012. He then shifted from student to employee, working in building operations for the Student Union. In 2014, Musonda was able to use his experiences as an international student to help those in similar situations when he filled the role of advising coordinator in the UMKC International Student Affairs Office. In this position, he advised over 700 international students on pertinent immigration regulations.

These days, Musonda works for the City of Kansas City, MO as the executive director of the Bruce R. Watkins cultural Heritage Center & Museum.

“I always wanted to work for the government, be it at the local, state or national level,” he says. “My goal was to run a department or entity in that realm, and without my Bloch degrees, particularly the M.P.A., I would not be where I am today.”

In addition to filling a career goal, this new position allows Musonda to give back to the city he has come to love.

“Kansas City was the perfect location for me to transition to life in the United States,” he says. “The laid back culture in our big-small city was ideal for my personal and professional development.”

Musonda’s passion for the city is so strong, he even put it in writing. In 2015, he published a memoir Home Away From Home: The Story of an International Student’s Journey from Africa to America.

“This is why I titled my memoir Home Away From Home, and used an image of downtown Kansas City on the cover – I love this city!”

Chiluba is highlighted in the 2017 Bloch Magazine. To read the full edition, click here.

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