Universities and schools

The country’s only school of journalism closed in 1991 after having trained more than 120 aspiring journalists, specialised in radio or print media. Some of these graduates were able to continue their studies in Kinshasa and obtain a Bachelor of Arts. They trained in Burundi and former Zaire. Most of them are still working in various media and international organisations. Those who were naturally gifted became great professionals, respected by colleagues who have embraced journalism schools or universities in the country or abroad. Many heads of news organisations would rather prefer to directly recruit operational staff, as training new people reveals costly. In the already mentioned survey Audit des médias par les médias, this concern was highlighted: "The interviews with radio directors are very clear on this point, young recruits know nothing about the practice of the profession, they do not know how to make a paper, they do not know how to make a summary, let alone how to handle equipment. The directors are confronted with the necessity to train them without really having the human resources and financial requirements."

Since the 2000s, private universities are running courses related to social communication or communication for development. Journalism-related courses are optional, but the Université Lumière de Bujumbura (Lumière University of Bujumbura - ULBU) has set up an audiovisual section. In 2008, the Hope Africa University was created, which currently has a radio station where students can practice as future journalists.

In 2009, the University of Burundi in partnership with Belgian cooperation, launched a complementary Master in Journalism. The laureates must complete one year to obtain this prestigious degree. The program targets mainly journalists already on the job. Before the 2015 crisis, great lecturers came to teach courses, mainly from Belgian universities. Interviewed managers of different media outlets realised that it is necessary to filter the admittance and allow only experienced journalists, as the mere participation to the master’s course is not sufficient to improve the skills of participants new to the profession.