Mr. Joe Mucheru, Cabinet Secretary- Ministry of Information Communications and Technology, making a presentation to the students at Vet Pathology Lecture theatre, CAVS.
Students from College of Agriculture and Veterinary Sciences (CAVS) were privileged to interact with Cabinet Sectaries from Ministry of Agriculture Livestock and Fisheries, Ministry of Information Communications and Technology, and Ministry of Education, Science and Technology. This comes barely a week after President Kenyatta’s visit to preside over the laying of the foundation stone of Waangari Maathai Institute and afterwards meeting the students.
The Cabinet Secretaries, Mr. Joe Mucheru of ICT, Mr. Will Bett of Agriculture and Dr. Fred Matiang’i of Education docket, shared ideas on; research and innovation, exchange programs, mentorship, higher education and research funding, employment and attachment, incorporation of students-led ideas on development of government structures plus other matters affecting students at university level.
Speaking during the session, Mr. Will Bett informed the students that the government is delighted with the University’s efforts towards developing innovative courses that are in tandem with the current market demands and assured full support in terms of providing the relevant teaching, internship and research facilities.
As part of actualizing seamless government and University partnerships in research and development activities, he stated that Ministry of Agriculture Livestock and Fisheries has considered integrating Agriculture and Veterinary students into its development plans for securing the future of pastoral communities in Kenya and other upcoming projects like the creation and expansion of fisheries and blue economy project. Further, he informed them that the government is keen to mechanize, finance and market agriculture produce to improve agri-business and other agriculture value chains.
“Agriculture is significant in Kenya’s economic growth therefore cease the moment when every player is looking and focusing on the youth”. He added.
Dr. Matiang’i affirmed the government’s proposals to additionally fund research activities in the University considering its growth in student population and academic courses. On the idea of government’s participation in facilitating exchange programs, he stated that the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology is working together with Higher Education Loans Board (HELB) to make flexible and diversify the way in which it funds and supports student exchange programs.
However, he noted that the biggest obstacle among the students was information gap which hinders them from accessing vital academic funding and sponsorship opportunities. He therefore challenged them to seek information and opportunities.
On his part, Mr. Joe Mucheru pledged additional development of ICT recourses that suit and strengthen agriculture in Kenya. He advised the students to come up with more creative and innovative ideas because the Ministry of Information Communications and Technology is ready to support such ideas.
The visit by three cabinet secretaries confirms the University of Nairobi’s position as a leader in research and scholarly excellence. Apart from acting as mentorship opportunities, such initiatives, promote excellence in experiential learning and transformational community outreach. They impart positive ethics, values and practices to the students thereby developing a holistic person.
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