New dawn in Kenya as private varsities admit Govt-sponsored students

Mount Kenya University receives most applications, admits highest number of students.

he placement of the first batch of Government-sponsored students in private universities since independence marks a major milestone in Kenya’s higher education sector. Mount Kenya University (MKU) attracted the highest number of applications and admitted the bulk of the sponsored students in its September 2016 intake. MKU took in 1,126 (or more than 10 percent) of the 10,000 students sponsored by the Government. In an interview, MKU Vice Chancellor, Prof Stanley W. Waudo, described this as a move in the right direction for the country. “These private universities based in the country train Kenyan students,” he said. “The institutions were established in accordance with the processes and procedures laid out in the Universities Act 2012, which recognises all universities and subjects them to the same quality standards.” He added: “Qualified Kenyans train in both public and private universities, which should receive equal treatment.” A report by the Commission for University Education (CUE) recognises MKU for supplementing “government efforts to provide education and equip learners with competencies that enable them play a significant nation building role.” CUE conducted an institutional quality audit at the MKU Thika Campus between 15 and 17 November, 2016. “The university provides a conducive environment and resources to enable student(s) acquire desired academic goals,” observed CUE in the exit report. MKU Registrar Academic Affairs, Dr Ronald Maathai, confirmed that all the Government-sponsored students were admitted to the university’s main campus in Thika town.

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