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President encourages growth of colleges

27 August 2014, 12:55

Nairobi - President Uhuru Kenyatta has underscored the role of academia to foster socio-economic progress, harmonious co-existence and innovations.

"Universities have striven to supply government, commerce and industry, regional and international bodies with outstanding talent," Kenyatta said.

The president said the government will foster an intellectual culture to catalyze the country's renewal. He noted universities are centers of innovation and entrepreneurship that will accelerate attainment of vision 2030.

"Our universities realign with a transformative roadmap that focus on creating a strong cadre of professionals who will lead Kenya's trade and industry, entrepreneurship, service, research, innovation and public service," the president said.

The University of Nairobi tower is a Vision 2030 flagship project to promote academic vibrancy, technological progress and innovations.

Kenyatta said the government will partner with philanthropies to support growth of higher education in the country. He urged captains of industry to set up endowments to promote scholarly work.

"Endowments give an extra sense of stability to institutions of higher learning that have long relied on public grants. My government will partner with these benefactors to initiate projects that promote access to learning," Kenyatta told university administrators.

Deputy President William Ruto said the government plans to construct 60 extra technical colleges -- at least one in every constituency -- to ensure adequate technical skills for the country's labor market.

Ruto said universities and middle colleges are necessary to provide a balanced workforce to drive the economy.

"Elevation of some middle level colleges to constituent colleges of universities and later to fully fledged universities created knowledge gaps that need to be filled," he said.

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