Ma­jor­ity of youths pre­fer var­sity cour­ses, says of­fi­cer

Ed­u­ca­tion di­rec­tor Mu­jumba says train­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties in pub­lic tech­ni­cal and vo­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions have in­creased by 40,963 due to in­crease in the num­ber of in­sti­tu­tions

The Star (Kenya) - - Politics General - JOSEPH NDUNDA @MuthuiN­dunda

The ma­jor­ity of Kenyan youths pre­fer pur­su­ing diploma and cer­tifi­cate cour­ses in uni­ver­si­ties to those in mid­dle-level col­leges.

They do not want to join poly­tech­nics, tech­ni­cal train­ing col­leges and vo­ca­tional train­ing cen­tres.

Senior as­sis­tant di­rec­tor of tech­ni­cal ed­u­ca­tion Fredrick Mu­jumba yes­ter­day said train­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties in pub­lic tech­ni­cal and vo­ca­tional in­sti­tu­tions have in­creased by 40,963 due to a rise in the num­ber of in­sti­tu­tions, but many stu­dents still avoid them.

Na­tional poly­tech­nics have a ca­pac­ity of 28,001 stu­dents. Tech­ni­cal and vo­ca­tional col­leges have a stu- dent ca­pac­ity of 36,499, while vo­ca­tional train­ing cen­tres have 80,905 ca­pac­ity.

These do not in­clude the Na­tional Youth Ser­vice, which re­cruits thousands of youths for train­ing in var­i­ous cen­tres coun­try­wide.

Mu­jumba said de­spite 121,128 train­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties in pub­lic and TVETs, many stu­dents placed in the in­sti­tu­tions by the Kenya Uni­ver­si­ties and Col­leges Cen­tral Place­ment Ser­vice still have low re­gard for them.

“There is a so­cial in­cli­na­tion to uni­ver­si­ties. Mid­dle-level col­leges are per­ceived to be for the less aca­dem­i­cally en­dowed,” Mu­jumba said.

He said many still want to fol­low the tra­di­tional sys­tem of pri­mary, sec­ondary and univer­sity. Learn­ers can join Vo­ca­tional Train­ing Cen­tres, pop­u­larly known as Youth Poly­tech- nics, for a cer­tifi­cate course af­ter pri­mary school, pro­ceed to a Tech­ni­cal Col­lege for Diploma and univer­sity for a de­gree pro­gramme.

Mu­jumba said the gov­ern­ment has built 130 tech­ni­cal train­ing in­sti­tu­tions. He said con­struc­tion of these in­sti­tu­tions is com­plete, but they have no train­ing equip­ment.

China will pro­vide equip­ment for the TVETs and the last batch of equip­ment is ex­pected to be in the cen­tres by March next year.

Mu­jumba said 60 of them will start op­er­at­ing from Jan­uary next year, while learn­ing in the other 70 will be­gin in July.

He spoke at a Nairobi ho­tel dur­ing a me­dia brief­ing or­gan­ised by the Na­tional Council for Pop­u­la­tion and De­vel­op­ment.

/JAMES WAINAINA

MKU grad­uands cel­e­brate dur­ing the in­sti­tu­tion’s eighth grad­u­a­tion cer­e­mony in Thika on Au­gust 7 last year. Be­sides de­gree cour­ses, most uni­ver­si­ties of­fer diploma and cer­tifi­cate cour­ses as well

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