February 16, 2024

National champion tennis player named the February Student of the Month

Bruno Nhavene

Known for his dominance on the tennis court, Cowley College sophomore Bruno Nhavene has shown he is no slouch in the classroom as the sports management major was recently named the school’s February Student of the Month.

Nhavene is the son of Armindo Nhavene and Stela Canbule and grandson of Rosalia Toma, who all reside in Maputo, Mozambique. He has a brother, Armindo Nhavene Jr., 25, and a sister, Shannel Nhavene, 7. 

Being the No. 1-ranked under-12 tennis player in South Africa, Nhavene moved to Morocco at an early age to concentrate on his tennis career. 

“It was tough for my parents to be away from me, but they told me if you want to be someone in life, you have to sacrifice and go through things that will make you a better person,” Nhavene said. “They did what was best for me, and I love them with all my heart.”

Nhavene originally had plans to play tennis for an NCAA Division I school but found out he was ineligible to attend. So, he went the JUCO route and came to play for the Tigers.

“I believe everything happens for a reason,” Nhavene said. “Being at Cowley has opened more doors for me and allowed me to find new skills like being a leader. I consider my teammates my brothers, and I am very grateful for all the opportunities Cowley has given me.”

At Cowley, he is a resident assistant in the Kimmell Dorm; he has been named the Athlete of the Month and Athlete of the Year and helped guide the tennis team to its first national title since 1991. 

As a freshman, Nhavene teamed with Boruch Skierkier to win the fall doubles title at the ITA Cup in Rome, GA. Individually, he went 27-1 in singles play and was the national champion at No. 3 singles. He also went 29-2 in doubles play and teamed with Takeshi Taco to win the national title at No. 1 doubles.

“When Takeshi and I stepped on the court together, we felt that if you were going to beat us, you were going to have to kill us because there is no way we were going to give it to them easy,” Nhavene said. “It was special getting to share the court with him.”

Nhavene capped his freshman season by being named the Junior College Male Athlete of the Year during the 25th annual Greater Wichita Sports Banquet held in June 2023.

Along with being a leader on the tennis team, Janet Clasen, director of childcare and development/early childhood education, said Nhavene donates his time to help students in the classroom who struggle with language barriers as Nhavene speaks five different languages.

“I could go on and on about Bruno,” Clasen said. “from the first class that we had together, he was always the "helpful student." Bruno works hard in and out of class. He has big goals and there is no doubt that he will achieve them all, but as he is achieving his goals, he will be helping others do the same alongside him. Bruno is a leader not only on the tennis court but also in the classroom. Bruno has a heart the size of Texas and will go the extra mile to help those around him succeed. I value Bruno's leadership and treasure having him in class.
In the fall, Nhavene teamed with sophomore Reiya Komagata to capture the doubles title at the ITA Cup in Rome, GA. This marked the first time in the history of the Tiger tennis teams that Cowley had a national champion at the ITA Cup.

Currently, the Cowley tennis team is ranked No. 1 and is 4-0 on the season. 

“This team is very talented and hard-working,” Nhavene said. “The guys are motivated, and I hope to guide the team to another national title.” 

Nhavene has a 3.42 grade point average and is proud to be named the February Student of the Month.

“It means a lot to be named the Student of the Month,” Nhavene said. “I try to treat everyone with respect. I thank everyone at Cowley who supports the students, and I feel at home at Cowley. The small city of Ark City has allowed me to focus more on my grades and tennis,” Nhavene said. 

After Cowley, Nhavene has signed to play tennis at the University of Oklahoma. At OU, he will be reunited with his former Cowley head coach Manny Raga, who is now an assistant for the Sooners. 

“I am super excited to team up with Manny again,” Nhavene said. “However, I know it will not be the same as Cowley. Cowley will always have a special place in my heart.”

Rama Peroo | Director of Institutional Communication
Cowley College
125 S. 2nd Street
Arkansas City, KS 67005