Making law students happy, comfortable
In any education institution, student welfare is critical in promoting learning. DR JUDY NGAYU, Associate Dean at Mount Kenya University’s Parklands Law Campus, explains what her office does to ensure learners are well taken care of.
Q. On student welfare at the MKU School of Law, what are the main issues that the Dean of Students office addresses?
Student welfare at Mount Kenya University’s Parklands law campus falls under the associate dean of students’ office.
Under this department, we have an associate dean of students, chaplain, sports and clubs’ coordinator, nurse and counsellor.
We strongly believe in democracy. So, students carry out elections and decide on their leadership. This leadership is called Mount Kenya University Student Association (MKUSA). They deal with all issues to do with student welfare such as student activities, social welfare, sports, trips and academics.
We also have monthly class representative meetings where we address class issues. The class representatives have an opportunity to learn from each other on how to communicate information to the class and how to be an effective leader.
In order to prepare our students for the office, it is a requirement that the students dress in dark suits on Mondays and Tuesdays. We have received great feedback from institutions where our students have worked as interns that their work and dressing is professional.
We have various religious groups under the leadership of our chaplain. There are various activities for Muslims, Young Catholics Students Association, Seventh Day Adventists and Christian Union. Each of them has a place of worship within the campus and has active members. They are all enthusiastically engaged in moulding others. They carry out ministry work within the campus and outside, e.g. prisons and children’s homes. Through this movement, they have been trained to be commissioners for the MKUSA elections.
Counselling and Health
We have an in-house counsellor and counselling facilities. We also train interested students on peer counselling. They support their peers and educate them on issues that affect the student of today.
We also have a qualified nurse and a fully equipped clinic at the campus.
The management of MKU student entertainment falls under the social welfare secretary. We pride ourselves in nurturing talents through vibrant sports (both indoor and outdoor), clubs, drama, music activities etc.
Q. Are there initiatives in the pipeline to improve student welfare?
The MKU Parklands Law Campus was upgraded in 2015. Consequently, several plans are underway to enhance this status. One is to have our own student leadership whose focus will be solely on MKU Parklands Law Campus. We are in the process of preparing and improving office facilities for the new Parklands MKUSA who will take charge next year.