UNIVERSITY OF NAIROBI

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Joanna Roper on a mission for girl child education

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Female students have been urged to work diligently on their studies, careers and to reach their full potential. This was the message from Joanna Roper, the UK Envoy for Gender Equality as she spoke to students at the Chandaria Center of Performing Arts on June 26, 2018.

 

Joanna Roper observed that 130 million girls are out of school and that is lost potential. “Many girls are getting married younger, one in three women face sexual abuse. Girls who are educated marry late, get few children and establish better families. Educating girls is the smart thing to do, “she said.

Girls education can lead to great financial and economic growth she assured girls from marginalized communities of the support from the government of the United Kingdom. “All around the world, we see commitment to education, we are happy to support girls to stay in school,” she said.

The University of Nairobi was commended for achieving parity in virtually all disciplines as the number of female students match those of the male students. Female students have embraced male dominated courses like science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) courses. Joanna urged the male students to be powerful change agents and to support girl’s education in their communities.

Prof. Japhet Ntiba, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, noted that girls enrollment have improved significantly, compared to some two decades back although retention has been a challenge. “50 percent of girls don’t transit to secondary schools”, he said.  He observed that measures are being undertaken to ensure that girls attain quality education and those measures have started bearing fruits because parity is being achieved in institutions of higher learning, even in STEM courses.

The Vice-Chancellor , Prof. Peter Mbithi thanked Joanna Roper for using her extensive and coming to the university to galvanize suppport for girl child education. 

 Prof. Julius Ogeng’o, Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic Affairs, pointed out the efforts being made by the University of Nairobi to ensure that gender issues are addressed. Key among them is: establishment of the Institute of Gender Studies, having a policy on gender issues and provision of equal opportunities for both male and female students.