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First Chancellors Convention provides critical strategies for universities

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Prof. Judith Bahemuka Chairperson, Chancellors Committee, Dr. Fred Matiang’i, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Education and Prof. Collette Suda, Principal Secretary, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, consult during the Chancellors Convention.

Discussions at the two-day Chancellors Convention have provided a critical retrospection for strategic, coherent and systematic development of the university education sector.

The first Chancellors Convention which was held from January 25-26, 2017, at the Safari Park Hotel, brought together key stakeholders from both public and private universities.
Themed, ‘University Education and Sustainable Development in Kenya,’ participants took stock of achievements in university education in Kenya and also sought to consolidate and enhance these achievements.
While presiding over the opening ceremony, Education Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Fred Matiang’i, had a candid talk with the universities chancellors, chairmen of councils, vice-chancellors, officials from the Commission for University Education and the Ministry of Education on the current state of higher education in Kenya.
“Reforms in the university education is not an option. We need to run the institutions differently,” he said. “I am happy that this Convention is taking place because we need to have an honest conversation on how we can ensure quality teaching, learning and research in our universities.”
According to the Chairperson, Chancellors Committee, Prof. Judith Bahemuka, at the end of the convention, a framework for a coherent comprehensive policy and legal framework for future development of higher education in Kenya would be generated.
“We hope that the deliberations will build consensus on actions to be taken by various actors to confront the challenges of growth, governance, funding, staff development, research and innovations as well as linkages to the critical sectors of the economy,” she said. “In addition, we need to identify framework and actions for strengthening universities as bastions of national socio-economic development, unity in midst of diversity, cohesion, peace and security and also foster ideas, identify trends, note challenges and project future scenarios for enabling universities to drive the post-2015 sustainable development goals.”
The convention was held in the wake of the initiatives by the Government to establish and implement coherent, comprehensive policy and legal frameworks for the future of the higher education sector. The meeting sought to address the current challenges and generate consensus on the way forward.
The first Chancellors Convention was jointly organized by the Chancellors Committee, the Ministry of Education and the Commission for University Education.