A total of 118 graduands were conferred with doctorate degrees by Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology during the institution’s graduation ceremony marked, Friday, June 21, 2019. The ceremony, presided over by the recently appointed Chancellor, Prof. Joseph Mathu Ndung’u, brought together 3545 graduands from different disciplines.
The Chancellor noted that JKUAT had evolved into a formidable centre of excellence, producing top notch scholars and innovative students. He informed the gathering that since January 2019, JKUAT acquired 38 new intellectual property rights, including seven patents, one utility model, 26 trademarks, three copyrights and an industrial design.
Prof. Ndungu challenged county governments to make use of the innovations developed at JKUAT to spur socio-economic development in the devolved units. He singled out the disease-free, fast-growing and early maturing coconut tissue culture seedlings, pioneered by JKUAT as a product that could easily turnaround the fortune of residents of the coastal counties.
The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Victoria Ngumi revealed that JKUAT had in the last two years remained the most attractive university, attracting the highest number of students through the Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Services. A total of 5901 students on government scholarship are set to join JKUAT in September 2019, Prof. Ngumi added.
“The University has maintained a close working relationship with industry, regulatory bodies and the Government in the design, implementation and evaluation of University curricula,” the Vice Chancellor, said.
According to Vice Chancellor, this year alone, six of JKUAT programmes including the Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, BSc. Marine Engineering and BSc. Mining and Mineral Processing have been accredited by relevant organs.
As a further mark of quality, Prof. Ngumi said, JKUAT had in June 2019, secured two ISO certifications on Quality Management Systems (ISO 9001:2015) and Environmental Management Systems (ISO 14001:2015).
JKUAT Council Chairman, Prof. Paul Njuki Kanyari said JKUAT was implementing a number of infrastructure projects as a way of easing pressure on teaching and research facilities in the wake of increased demand of its academic and research programmes.
Prof. Kanyari identified the completion of the government funded PAUSTI complex; and the JICA supported extension and renovation of the Agricultural Laboratory Building as outputs of utilitarian partnerships with JKUAT stakeholders.
The Council Chair also reiterated commitment of the body to enhance human capacity at JKUAT; reporting that a total of 105 staff were undergoing postgraduate training in various thematic areas. The University was in the process of recruiting two deputy vice chancellors, he added.
Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua noted that JKUAT had emerged as veritable institution of research and innovation. He urged the University dons to undertake targeted research towards providing sustainable solutions to the seemingly unending political squabbles in Kenya.
The Governor whose spouse, Miss Ng’ang’a Lilian, graduated with a Masters degree in Project Management decried hard economic times facing the country where access to jobs or capital to start businesses had become a dream for majority of the young people.
Also present at the ceremony was Dr. Wilber K. Ottichilo whose son, Tumaini Fanon Ananda, graduated with a doctorate degree in Geospatial Information Systems.
A total of 96 students were awarded post graduate diplomas in tax and customs, offered in partnership with the Kenya School of Revenue Administration