Mount Kenya University has received Sh90 million as research grant from a US consortium.
Prof Lemma Sembet, the executive director of African Economic Research Consortium (AERC), said the organisation’s board met in New York on November 28 and approved the grant, which will be for three years.
“After thorough negotiations, the board agreed to allocate Sh90 million to MKU for three years,” Prof Sembet said in a statement to the university.
“We will in due course prepare the grant documents,” he added.
On August 24, MKU submitted a proposal for the establishment of the Institute of Development Research and Outreach.
MKU Chairman Simon Gicharu welcomed the grant, saying it will help in the development of the university.
“The grant will make us the best in business and entrepreneurship,” Dr Gicharu said.
MKU has stepped up partnership programmes.
It recently initiated collaboration with two leading educational institutions in the United States — Clarke University and the University of Dubuque.
Under the agreement, the institutions will share facilities and have exchange programmes for students.
In May, MKU entered into an academic partnership with China University of Petroleum (East China) with the aim of getting assistance in the training of experts in the oil industry.
Through the partnership, the two institutions exchange students and engage in joint scientific and technological research projects, among other activities.
At the same time, the government has committed to allocate at least Sh90 billion for research at universities.
At the moment, only Sh400 million is available for research and is managed by the National Council for Science, Technology and Science.
According to Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i, Kenyans have very high expectations of the quality and ability of the university education system to respond to the immediate and long-term needs of society.
“I would like it to be known that the needs of our country have been changing. It is, therefore, imperative that universities change and adapt to this new reality,” Dr Matiang’i said recently.