Universities should extend the boundaries of higher education to make it more accessible and affordable. They should invest more in information and communication technologies (ICTs) to make this possible.
The VC shared this thought during MKU’s 14th Graduation Ceremony on 3rd August,2018 at the main campus in Thika.
He was addressing the graduation theme, “Financing of Higher Education in Africa for Quality and Sustainability.”
He said that using ICTs, MKU had enabled students who previously could not pursue higher education due to competing exigencies of work and family, and due to distance and time, to surmount those challenges.
He added that MKU’s Open, Distance and Electronic Learning (ODEL) Centres spread across Kenya and complemented by the Digital Varsity, had made higher education accessible and significantly affordable.
The university, he stressed, knew that it existed to mitigate societal challenges. That is why it has aligned its curricula to the “Big Four Agenda” and the Kenya Vision 2030; Science, Technology and Innovation Strategy for Africa 2024 (STISA-2024) and African Union Agenda 2063; and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Towards this end, the university revises its programmes regularly.
This year, the University Senate reviewed 52 programmes.
Prof. Waudo explained that MKU had robust internal quality assurance mechanisms that ensured it produced graduates who had the desired knowledge, skills, creative abilities and moral qualities.
To complement this, the university has strong academic advisory services office to provide support to students. The VC thanked all MKU students and their leadership for their consultative approach to seeking solutions on matters affecting them. Through this consultative process, the university has amended the Mount Kenya University Students Association (MKUSA) Constitution and the Student Elections Guidelines
He said MKU had successfully installed the biometric security system at the Main Campus,Thika. All students and staff have to be biometrically verified and authenticated to access the University facilities. The biometric system supplements other security measures, including floodlights, security awareness campaigns and intensified night security patrols on and off campus.
Prof Waudo said the university’s investment over the years to build a robust research culture continued to bear fruit.
There is an increase in articles published in peer reviewed journals and participation in research dissemination forums, which accord the university greater presence and visibility, leading to improved local and global ranking.
On research resource mobilisation, MKU continues to win local and international grants, with a corresponding increase in local and international collaborative research.
“We have continued to become an attractive collaborative research university due to our policy of efficient use of research funds, timely disbursement and accountability,” said Prof. Waudo.