When Diane Tumutone had the opportunity to continue her studies in sports management in 2019, she knew full well that this was just the beginning of her dream.
The 31-year-old, who graduated with a bachelor’s degree in environmental studies from the University of Secular Adventists in Kigali, has worked with the Dream Team Football Academy (DTFA) as general manager since 2010.
DTFA is a youth football academy that started a decade ago with the aim of developing champions in football and in life.
Although Tumutone was given a managerial role due to her passion for the sport, she did not have enough knowledge of what was required of her. She had to take courses related to her new assignment.
Two years ago, when the opportunity presented itself, she jumped at the opportunity to apply for a course in sports management, and luckily, she was selected to take a degree course at the University of Leipzig in Germany.
Tumutoneshe is now the first and only woman in Rwanda with a degree in sports management.
She regrets that the lack of institutions in the country that can provide sports management courses is one of the main reasons why few women are interested in taking such courses.
âOver the past two years, the skills I acquired in Germany have enabled me to carry out my responsibilities in a more professional manner than before. “
âIn addition, it also broadened my knowledge, which I think will help the development of our organization (DTFA) and the country as a whole,â she adds.
Football, part of his life
Tumutoneshe remembers that when she was little one of her relatives hosted the Rayon Sports women’s team at their home. As someone who loved sports; she said, that made her curious to know more about the team.
After being interested in finding out what the women were doing, the team captain invited her to one day attend their game. It was the beginning of his passion for sport, and football in particular.
Prior to taking on the role of General Manager, Tumutoneshe volunteered with the Dream Team academy, mentoring children under the age of five.
Tumutoneshe holds an advanced diploma in management of Olympic sports organizations, which she obtained from the International Olympic Committee.
Currently, she is pursuing a Masters in Sports Management at the Institute of Sports Science and Technology (ISST) in Pune, India. Due to Covid-19, the program is online.
By 2025, she aims for a doctorate in sports management.
She also hopes to continue to organize sports management courses for other sports managers who wish to start or deepen their knowledge in this field, but do not have the possibility of studying abroad.
âSports management is not just about football, it’s about sport in general. My dream is to see Rwanda have more women managers in sports organizations, federations and associations. “
Tumutoneshe argues that until there are enough qualified managers in different disciplines, the country will not achieve sustainable growth and development in the sport.
About the academy
Tumutoneshe thanks the Dream Team Football Academy for giving him the platform to make his dreams come true.
Jacques Kayisire, the founder of the academy, explains that the idea of ââcreating the academy was to give back to the community by inspiring and training children to excel in football and in their academic performance.
He recalls setting up the facility after some of his former teammates came to see him for handouts, simply because he had a job, which he got after he finished his studies, unlike the Most of his teammates who hadn’t gone to school.
âIt prompted me to found the academy. I felt like it would not only bring young people together in sport, but also an opportunity to encourage them to take their education seriously.
Kayisire is currently the first vice-president of Rayon Sports football club, nine times Rwandan champions.