Education Cabinet Secretary, Amb. (Dr.) Amina Mohammed has appointed Prof. Victoria Wambui Ngumi to serve as the Vice Chancellor of Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. Ngumi, a professor of botany takes over from Prof. Mabel Imbuga who exited Tuesday July 31, 2018 after serving at the helm of the Institution for 10 years.
The new Vice Chancellor has risen through the ranks having served the University in various capacities since she joined the Institution as a graduate teacher in the department of horticulture in 1983. Until her appointment, Prof. Ngumi was serving as the Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of Administration, a position she has held since October 2014. Earlier, she served as the Deputy Vice Chancellor in charge of the Administration, Planning and Development before the division was restructured.
In 2005, she was appointed the founding Principal of JKUAT Karen Campus, having served as the founding Director of the Alternative Degree Programme.
Prof. Ngumi, is a beneficiary of the prestigious Fulbright scholarship that took her to Clemson University, South Carolina, USA, earning her in 1997, a PhD degree in plant physiology. Earlier, the don had as well won another Japan based Mombusho scholarship, that enabled her to pursue a Master of Science degree in Botany at Hiroshima University, successfully graduating in 1989. The new vice chancellor, an alumnus of the University of Nairobi where she obtained an undergraduate degree in Education also holds an executive MBA from JKUAT.
Prof. Ngumi has attracted multiple research funds, and holds extensive knowledge on teaching and research in the area of plant physiology, having published dozens of articles in peer reviewed high impact journals. She pays close attention to plant tissue culture and conservation botany; all of which she believes are critical to conservation of ecosystems and environment.
Prof. Ngumi who has also supervised a number of students at masters and doctorate levels, is a member of the African Biotechnology Stakeholders Forum (ABSF) and the Natural Products Research Network for East and Central Africa (NAPRECA).
The don’s international visibility was fostered between 2005 and 2006, when she served as a senior education fellow at the African Network of Agroforestry and Natural Resource Management Education.
The soft spoken academic will be the second female don to serve JKUAT as vice chancellor; an institution that has emerged as a regional centre of excellence in training, research, innovation and entrepreneurship.