The Chancellor of Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), Prof. Joseph Mathu Ndung’u, has pledged to work with the institution’s stakeholders in his effort to take the university forward to an even higher training, research and innovation pedestal.
Prof. Ndung’u who currently serves as the Head of the Neglected Tropical Diseases at the Geneva based, Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) in Switzerland, paid tribute to former and current leadership, noting they had “collectively steered JKUAT so well, leading to the achievement of the present standards.”
The Chancellor was speaking during his inaugural address to the JKUAT University Council, Management, staff and students at Juja Main Campus, Wednesday May, 8, 2019. His visit follows his appointment by President Uhuru Kenyatta in January this year.
The visibly elated scholar said, “My inaugural visit has given me an opportunity to appreciate the efforts of each one of you, which I must say, is commendable,” and further added it had also given him “an opportunity to learn more from the people who have “contributed immensely in making the University so admirable.”
He hailed the university’s leadership for steering the institution to greater levels of achievement to become “an institution whose name and efforts are recognized and appreciated regionally and globally.
“The frequency of encouraging media reports on research, innovations and discoveries by staff and students, touching on a broad range of fields, have made JKUAT a brand that stands out from the other Universities in Kenya,” Prof. Ndungu said.
The elated chancellor congratulated the University for emerging the most preferred university in the country for the second year running. “I am pleased to note that JKUAT topped in the number of students admitted this year, with 5,901, a number that is even higher than last year when 4,886 students were admitted.”
While commending the leadership for the good work, the chancellor appealed to the university community to stay true to the institution’s core values.
“You are bound to make incredible things happen if you keep up the spirit of togetherness in all your activities for the good of our beloved country – Kenya.”
The don who holds a PhD. in the Immunopathology of Human African Trypanosomiasis (sleeping sickness) from the University of Glasgow’s Veterinary School, Scotland, said the Sino-Africa Joint Research Centre (SAJOREC), an international collaborative centre with the People’s Republic of China that focuses on conservation of biodiversity and research, has enhanced JKUAT’s profile in the region.
He thanked President Uhuru Kenyatta for appointing him to serve as the sixth Chancellor of JKUAT, terming JKUAT as the best place to be. He, however cautioned that as he becomes part of JKUAT family, he was under no illusion of the challenges that face any institution.
“No home and no family is perfect and I don’t expect that I will be joining a home that is perfect. I am also not perfect, and I hope this family will accommodate me and my opinions, and give me an opportunity to work closely with the various organs of this great university to realize the dreams its founders had for the institution and for the country.”
During the three-day itinerary, the Chancellor had an opportunity to visit different sections at the university to see the research and innovation strides so far made.
The places Prof. Ndung’u toured in the company of Chairman of Council Prof. Paul Njuki, Council Member, Commissioner Njoki Kahiga, Vice Chancellor, Prof. Victoria Wambui Ngumi, and members of the University Management, included the Institute of Biotechnology Research, Engineering Workshops, JKUAT Noodles Factory, Sino Africa Joint Research Centre, University’s commercial arm – JKUATES, Karen and Nairobi CBD Campuses.