By Veronica Wanyee & Antonio Longangi

Under the supervision of the Counseling Center, the Peer Educators and Counselors Club (PECC) concluded its annual Peer Counseling Training on Saturday, September 22 at the Freida Brown Student Center.

The training held from September 14, covered the basics of peer education and counseling aiming at introducing students to peer education and counseling as an international standard of psychosocial support within an organization.

By Dan Muchai

USIU-Africa together with two other firms, has won a bid to train 34000 youths on a 10-day course on positive behaviour and employability, over a period of three years. The Kenya Youth Employment Opportunities Project (KYEOP) is funded by the International Development Association (IDA) through the Ministry of Public Service Youth and Gender Affairs. Participants will address the challenges experienced by the youth in seeking employment opportunities.

The training is targeted at young people living in 6 counties in Kenya namely; Nairobi, Kiambu, Machakos, Kitui, Nyandarua and Nakuru, and who are aged between 16 and 29 years of age. They must also have only completed their high school education, be without jobs and have experienced extended spells of unemployment or who are currently working in vulnerable jobs.

­While signing the contract, the Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza, lamented the challenges experienced by young people in seeking employment, observing that the 15 to 35 age group is rapidly converting to adult population having increased from 62.7% in 1979 to 66.6% in 2009. He therefore hailed the program as a game changer in improving the livelihoods of the youth and improving Kenya’s economic growth.

Prof. Zeleza further commended USIU-Africa for building on its long history of delivering soft skills training to the youth, having been the only University that won the bid to offer the program.

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Prof. Nancy Marlin (Professor of Psychology and Provost Emerita, San Diego State University) meets with Doctor of Business Administration students at the Research Training Room in the Incubation and Innovation Center on September 18, 2018, as part of the on-campus visit of the WSCUC reaffirmation of re-accreditation process. This is our first re-accreditation since we received accreditation as an independent institution in 2008. Looking on are Associate Professor of Accounting Dr. George Achoki (second left) and Associate Professor of Strategic Management Dr. Paul Katuse (third left). PHOTO: ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Dan Muchai

The WASC Senior Colleges and Universities Commission reaffirmation of reaccreditation team to USIU-Africa ended their visit on Thursday, September 20, following an exit meeting with the Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza, senior university officials and leaders of the university’s re-accreditation preparatory process.

The team was on campus from September 18-20, to assess the vericity of documents submitted as part of the university’s reaffirmation of accreditation process.

While here they met with all constituencies including governing bodies, adminstrative officials, faculty, staff, students and alumni in order to receive direct feedback along the lines of inquiry they had earlier indicated.

By Ernest Anguru

On Friday, September 21, 2018 USIU-Africa was among the top ten overall winners of the 2018 Employer of the Year Award, hosted by Federation of Kenya employers at Radisson Blu.

This award means that as USIU-Africa we are geared towards a demystified reward and remuneration process, flexible working environment, making the work place a new home for all and adoption of strategic HR dashboards and metric measurements. This reward is also a clear indication of our quest and commitment to academic excellence, operational excellence and service excellence in pursuit of an education that takes our students places. 

The Employer of the Year Awards (EYA) is an initiative by the Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE) that is geared towards promoting and encouraging best practices in Corporate Performance, People Management and Industrial Relations practices amongst employers in Kenya. This is in a bid to raise and sustain productivity, enterprise performance and responsibility.

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Prof. Frederick Iraki, Professor of French and (Ag.) Chair, Department of Languages and Linguistics, School of Humanities and Social Sciences addresses the 9th Annual African Languages in the Disciplines and Professions (ALDP) Conference on August 23, 2018 at the USIU-Africa auditorium. PHOTO:ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Dr. Naom Nyarigoti

The Harvard African Language Program in the Harvard University Department of African and African American Studies, in collaboration with USIU-Africa and the School of Law, University of Nairobi organized the 9th Annual African Languages in the Disciplines and Professions (ALDP) Conference on August 23, 2018 at the USIU-Africa auditorium under the theme: Law and Langauge.

The Honorable Chief Justice (Retired) Dr. Willy Mutunga, delivered the 4th Neville Alexander Lecture - a series dedicated to the ALDP Conference - at the venue.

The conference brought together lawyers, linguists, academics, policy makers and students, to begin framing the subject on the intersection between Law and Language, and more particularly, the hidden interface between legal expression and meaning.

USIU Africa Pharmacy walk
Pharmaceutical Society of Kenya (PSK) President Dr. Louis Machogu poses for photo with USIU-Africa Pharmacy majors during the World Pharmacists Day 2018 at PSK offices, along Lenana Road in Nairobi. Photo: Courtesy

By Dr. Were L. Munyendo

Members of the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences joined the Pharmaceutical Society of Kenya (PSK) and the Pharmacy & Poisons Board (PPB) to commemorate the World Pharmacists Day 2018 through a walk from the PPB offices to PSK offices along Lenana Road, on Tuesday, September 25.

The annual World Pharmacists Day was designated by the International Pharmaceutical Federation in 2009 to “promote and advocate for the role of the pharmacist in improving health in every corner of the world.”

Speaking on behalf of the University at the event, Dr. Munyendo underscored how the Bachelor of Pharmacy program at USIU-Africa is at the fore of embracing the global shift in pharmacy training from ‘Pharmaceutical products-based’ to ‘patient based’’ through operationalization of the first and only Pharmacy Skills Laboratory in Kenya. The Lab drew overwhelming interest from the gathered pharmacy professionals community, many of whom expressed  their eagerness to tour and possibly use this unique facility at USIU-Africa.

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Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza delivering the Convocation address to members of the university community on Monday, September 17, at the auditorium. PHOTO: ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Dan Muchai

The Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza addressed the university at the annual Vice Chancellor’s convocation on Monday, September 17, where he highlighted the key initiatives, activities, achievements, and challenges from the previous academic year, and set out the 2018-19 Academic Year Priorities.

 Addressing the formal university gathering, Prof. Zeleza expressed his pride at the improving financial stability of the university in spite of industry-wide declining enrollments and tighter state budgetary cuts for public universities. The number of enrolments have gone up by 169, while the (far more accurate) Full Time Equivalent number had also increased by 269 students. Indeed, as he noted, USIU-Africa is expanding its workforce, investing in new infrastructure and deepening its research funding.

2017-18 Year in Review

Priority 1: Expanding academic programs and becoming a reputable research university

The Vice Chancellor noted the five new academic programs and the establishment of the new School of Graduate Studies Research and Extension. The new School, the new research policy, as well as increased research activities, grants (KES 112 million) and hosting of major international conferences and lectures, marked a significant step towards the university’s priority of becoming a reputable research university.

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Students from Soka University say farewell to the children at Rehema PEFA Children’s Home at the conclusion of their stay in Kenya. PHOTO: ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Antonio Longangi

The second cohort of students from Soka University were hosted on campus from August 13 to 25 as part of the Study Abroad program. For 12 days, the 15 students and their chaperon served at Little Sisters for the Poor (Nyumba ya Wazee), Rehema PEFA Children’s Home and St. Scholastica Uzima Hospital. They assisted in general tasks at these institutions, embodying the shared value of USIU-Africa social responsibility and their own university.

Soka University is a private institution with  an 8000-strong student population at their campus in the Japanese capital of Tokyo. Japan.

Soka has also been a partner in USIU-Africa’s Study Abroad and Exchange Program for the last two years,with 30 students having participated in the program.

The Study Abroad program enables students from partner universities to visit USIU-Africa for a pre-determined period of time, while the Exchange Program allows USIU-Africa students to undertake equivalent courses at partner universities abroad for a maximum of two semesters.

USIU Africa Language Students
USIU-Africa students pose with members of the staff at the Kenyan embassy in the Spanish capital of Madrid. PHOTO:COURTESY

By Dan Muchai & Dr. Jane Muasya

Assistant Professor of Spanish Dr. Jane Muasya and Principal Academic Advisor Ms. Lynnette Nzioki accompanied a group of seventeen students of Spanish, on an academic trip to Spain in August 2018.

During the eighteen days they spent in Spain,the team visited the Spanish capital Madrid where they visited the world renowned Museo Nacional Del Prado (Prado National Museum), the Palacio Real de Madrid (Royal Palace of Madrid) and  La Almudena Cathedral. The group also paid a courtesy call at the Embassy of the Republic of Kenya in Spain, where they were received warmly by Embassy staff.

In the northwestern city of Valladolid, the students attended a two -week Spanish course at the Fundación de la Lengua Española, before proceeding on an excursion to the ancient northwestern Spanish city of Salamanca, home to one of Europe’s oldest universities - Universidad de Salamanca, which was founded in 1134 and granted a Royal Charter in 1218.

In Segovia, the group also made time to visit one of the best-preserved Roman aqueducts - a water conveyance structure that crosses the entire city, and has stood for almost two millenia.

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Assistant Professor and Dean in the Faculty of Education at Kasetsart University, Dr. Surachai Jewcharoensakul descries how to prepare Thai cusine to chefs from Nairobi restaurants and Hotel and Restaurant Management majors, during a cooking workshop held at the ultra modern training kitchen on the third floor of the Freida Brown Student Center. PHOTO:ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Antonio Longangi

USIU-Africa in partnership with the Royal Thai Embassy hosted a Thai Cooking Workshop on Thursday, September 13 at the Training Kitchen in the Freida Brown Student Center. The event was held as part of “Thai Food to the World” - a government effort to promote Thailand’s rich culture beyond the country’s borders.

The workshop was conducted by Assistant Professor and Dean in the Faculty of Education at Kasetsart University, Dr. Surachai Jewcharoensakul.