Miss Congeniality
An ecstatic Miss Congeniality Mercy Mwendwa (IBA Senior) receives her Miss Tourism (Nairobi) crown on Saturday, August 4 following her victory at the Miss Tourism Nairobi City County finals held at The Carnivore Nairobi. PHOTO: COURTESY

By Antonio Longangi

International Business Administration (IBA) Senior and current Miss Congeniality, Mercy Mwendwa, was crowned Miss Tourism Nairobi County at the conclusion of pageant’s finals held on Saturday, August 4 at The Carnivore.

Ms. Mwendwa emerged top out of 21 contestants angling to be the face of activities and campaigns that aim at promoting tourism opportunities within Nairobi City County.

By Diana Meso & Dan Muchai

On Saturday, July 28, the Admissions and the Marketing and Communications team represented the university at the Nation Media Group’s My Network Universities and Tertiary Institutions Career Fair held at the Kenya International Convention Centre (KICC).

The Fair, which was attended by over 500 participants drawn from local high schools, colleges, universities sought to provide guidance on career choices to high school students and graduates, as well as link university graduates with the job market.

CADFP Fellows Meeting VC 27072018 72
Eleven Carnegie Africa Diaspora Fellowship Program (CADFP) Fellows and alumni currently hosted by various universities in Kenya, pose for a group photo with the Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza (Front row - second right) at the close of a meeting, held on Friday, July 27 in the Vice Chancellor’s Boardroom. Accompanying some of the fellows were their hosts from Chuka University, Kenyatta University and St. Paul’s University. In attendance was the CADPF Program Coordinator Ms. Everlyn Anyal Musa (Back row - second left). PHOTO: DAN MUCHAI

By Everlyn Musa

On Friday, July 27, Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza, who is the Chair of Carnegie Africa Diaspora Fellowship Program (CADFP) Advisory Council and Program Coordinator Ms. Everlyn Anyal Musa, hosted eleven CADFP fellows and alumni currently hosted by various universities in Kenya. Accompanying some of the fellows were their hosts from Chuka University, Kenyatta University and St. Paul’s University.

This was the first opportunity for fellows, alumni and hosts to meet outside of the United States . The idea conceived by a few fellows  as a “Meet and Greet” event turned out to be a great opportunity for the group to know one another, share information and experiences, network and initiate collaborations.   Apart from knowing one another, the group desired to hear the vision of the program from Prof. Zeleza, whose research on “Engagements between African Diaspora Academics in the U.S. and Canada and African Institutions of Higher Education: Perspectives from North America and Africa” resulted in the CADFP that has, since its inception in 2013, awarded 355 fellowships to diaspora scholars hosted by universities in six African countries namely, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda and South Africa.

Evidence to Action Conference
Treasury Cabinet Secretary (CS) Mr. Henry Rotich speaks during the Evidence to Action Conference opening ceremony at the Auditorium on Thursday July, 26. Photo: Antonio Longangi

By Salome Asena and Diana Meso

USIU-Africa through the School of Graduate Studies, Research & Extension hosted the first Africa Monitoring and Evaluation conference -Evidence to Action, themed “Bridging the Gap: Strengthening the connections between Research, Evaluation and Evidence-based Policies and Practices in Sub-Saharan Africa” from Thursday July 26 to Friday July 27.

The two day conference which was held in partnership with International Centre for Evaluation and Development (ICED), the Monitoring and Evaluation Department, the National Treasury and Ministry of Planning among other institutions, brought together  over 400 participants including top government officials, researchers, instititutions of higher learning, embassies and agencies from across the globe.

The conference provided a platform for participants to discuss issues surrounding credible research and relevant evidence to inform policies and decision-making processes, as well as discuss the importance of monitoring and evaluation.

The Vice Chancellor Prof Paul Zeleza gets dressed in the official University regalia by The Chair Board of trustees Mr Linus Gitahi as The Chancellor Dr. Manu Chandaria and Prof Brown look on
Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul T. Zeleza (second left) puts on the ceremonial gown assisted by the Chair of the Board of Trustees Mr. Linus Gitahi (center) and Chair of the University Council Dr. Lola Odubekun (left). Looking on are the Chancellor Dr. Manu Chandaria (second right) and former Vice Chancellor Prof. Freida A. Brown during his inauguration in April 2016. Photo: Dan Muchai

By Ernest Anguru

The Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza has yet again bagged a prestigious award “The Thabo Mbeki Award for Leadership”, which was confered to him by the Board of Toyin Falola Annual International Conference (TOFAC), the Board of Pan-African University Press and the Ibadan Cultural Group, University of Ibadan in July this year.

The Thabo Mbeki Award for Leadership honors an African of a high caliber with unblemished record of public service or in the private sector, committed to the project of African Renaissance and African Unity and who has distinguished him/herself in the public or private sector.

This award adds to the many accolades the Vice Chancellor has received including Africa’s most prestigious book prize, the Noma Award, for his books; A Modern Economic History of Africa (1993) and Manufacturing African Studies and Crises (1997), Choice Outstanding Academic Title (2003) and Honorable Mention, Conover-Porter Award (2004).

Prof. Zeleza has made a measurable impact through his research and academic work in intellectual history, African studies, gender studies, diaspora studies, human rights and African literature that has crossed traditional boundaries.

His impact as Vice-Chancellor includes the infrastructural expansion of USIU-Africa, the building of a Research Park and medical hospital, extensive linkages with programs in the United States, a green environment, and the involvement of students in the day-to-day management of the campus.

Career Fair
 Students interact with a representative from VIVO energy during the 2018 Career Fair. Photo: Antonio Longangi

By Antonio Longangi

Over 40 local and international organizations took part in this year’s annual Career Fair organized by the Placement and Career Services office from Tuesday, July 24 to Thursday, July 26 on campus. Themed “Harnessing the millennial potential”, the fair consisted of a series of activities purposed to connect USIU-Africa students and Alumni with various organizations operating in the region and globally.

Attended by over 2000 participants, the event provided a platform for students and alumni to align their skills and talents to the current job market through three stages; self-assessment of skills, exploration of career options in various industries and organizations and connecting students to work opportunities where they submitted applications for hiring considerations.

The event featured an exhibition at the Graduation Square, a series of workshops, panel discussions and seminars held at the Auditorium and the library bookshop that focused on technology, banking, humanitarian work, professional training, human resources and more.

Some of the organizations present included Aga Khan University Hospital, Brighter Monday Kenya, KCB Bank, Lori Systems Corp, National Oil Corporation of Kenya, United Nations World Food Programme, Association of Media Women in Kenya (AMWIK) and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) among others.

USIU Africa Pharmacy
Pharmacy students pose for a photo during a practical class session. Photo: Antonio Longangi

By Eugene Otoo and Diana Meso

On Friday, July 20, the School of Pharmacy and Health Science hosted its staff, faculty and students for an inaugural breakfast meeting in LT4, to discuss the current state of the school, new developments and provide a platform for staff, students and faculty to interact.

The breakfast was also held to celebrate the leadership of the former program director Dr. Betty Mbatia, Assistant Professor of Biochemistry & Biotechnology and welcome Dr. Lincoln Munyendo the Inaugural Chair, Department of Industrial and Analytical Pharmacy.

Prof. Njeri Wamae, Dean, School of Pharmacy and Health Science, pointed out that apart from launching the new program, B.Sc. in Epidemiology and Biostatistics, the school plans to introduce two other innovative programs; B. Tech Analytical Chemistry and B.Sc. in Applied Biochemistry in the next academic year.

Documentary Screening Europe at Sea EU Film Festival 17072018 055

By Antonio Longangi

His Excellency Ambassador Stefano Dejak, the European Union Ambassador to Kenya was on campus on Tuesday, July 17 for the European Film Festival Plus screening of the documentary “Europe at Sea” on Tuesday, July 17, hosted by  USIU-Africa’s Young Diplomats Forum.

The event was part of the European Film Festival Plus aiming at providing a different image of Europe to the rest of the world through films and documentaries.

The documentary produced by award-winning film maker Annalisa Piras, features the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Ms. Federica Mogherini, who provided a unique insight into challenges threatening European security. “Europeans need to take responsibility for their own defence,” she says, expressing her concern that if Europe did not wake up to its global position, “we could sleepwalk into a conflict”.

Hoja Summit 20072018 148 4
Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza (second left) and Associate DVC-Student Affairs Prof. Wangari Mwai listen to one of the panelists, as he answers a question posed by a member of the audience during the second caucus of the Hoja Youth Summit held on Friday, July 20 in the auditorium. PHOTO:ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Lubna Elmahdy & Antonio Longangi

The Hoja Youth Summit held its second youth caucus on Friday, July 20 at the auditorium. Under the theme “Youth Participation in Leadership, Accountability and Governance: Towards a Youth-Led Africa”, academicians, professionals, entrepreneurs and Members of Parliament, engaged more than 250 delegates from USIU-Africa, other local universities and non-profit organizations, on the role of the youth in decision making.

In his remarks the Vice-Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza, described how scholars will contribute to the future of society. “Since education will remain a key factor in human development, it will need people to drive it. You can and should be one of those people” he said.

Nominated Member of Parliament Hon. Gideon Keter, himself a former President of the national youth organization – Youth Senate – urged his audience to get involved in the running of their country. His sentiment was supported by Embakasi East Member of Parliament Hon. Paul Ongili (Babu) Owino who observed that “Leadership starts right where you are, on your campus.”

Endangered Languages Conference 23072018 05
Professor of Languages and Acting Dean School of Humanities and Social Sciences Prof. Angelina Kioko contributes to a discussion during the workshop on “Documenting Endangered and Threatened Languages of East Africa” on Tuesday, July 24 at the Freida Brown Student Center. PHOTO: ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Angelina Kioko

Acting Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Science Prof. Angelina Kioko is participating in a “Documenting Endangered and threatened languages of East Africa” project workshop, which began on Monday July 23 and ends on Saturday, July 28 in the Freida Brown Student Center. The project, which is sponsored by Alliance for African Partnership - an initiative of Michigan State University - is a collaboration between Prof. Kioko; Ann Biersteker and Deo Ngonyani of Michigan State University; and Josephat Rugemarila of Tumaini University in Dar es Salaam.

The workshop’s objectives included Initiating a program to mentor young researchers in East Africa in field research, language documentation, authorship and publishing; Creating a network of scholars who will work with communities in recognition, appreciation and documentation of cultural heritage of different communities; and Dissemination of research and contribution to the creation of knowledge that springs from the study of the languages. 

The 13 participants are drawn from Tumaini University, University of Dar es Salaam, Kenyatta University, University of Nairobi, Dedan Kimathi University of Technology and USIU-Africa.