Dana Basnight Brown 01
Dr. Dana Basnight-Brown (Associate Professor of Psychology and Research Scientist). PHOTO: COURTESY

By Dan Muchai   

Dr. Dana Basnight Brown, of the Department of Psychology in the School of Humanities & Social Sciences, has been named an Associate Director for the Psychological Science Accelerator (PSA) - a distributed network of laboratories designed to enable and support the large scale collection of international samples of psychological data.

Dr. Brown, who is an Associate Professor of Psychology and Research Scientist, focuses her primary research on the cognitive processes surrounding human memory and language, particularly within the domain of bilingualism.

On receiving news of her appointment, Dr. Brown was ecstatic about the lab’s potential to increase the reach of cognitive science, which she believes will prove to be of great benefit to the entire university.

Nairobi Academy Recruitment 04072018 01
Pupils at Nairobi Academy interact with the modular electronic kits provided by the USIU-Africa team that made a presentation at the School on Wednesday, July 4, 2018. The team hoped to use the kits to shape perspectives on problem solving and creativity using computer science. PHOTO: MAX MUSAU

By Max Musau

During the Independence Day holiday on July 4, the Nairobi Academy held its annual ICT Open Day in which they invited a number of universities and organizations to showcase their programs and activities in ICT.

A team of students that included James Warui (APT Senior), Tracy Mugwe (APT Senior) and Felix Kipngetch (APT Freshman) lead by Technologist Mr. Max Musau from the School of Science and Technology, attended the open day and showcased a range of modular electronics kits that the School uses to teach computer science, and that are frequently used for teaching digital electronics and prototyping around the Internet Of Things (IOT) devices.

The devices provide a hands on approach to digital creation and automation using lights, motors, sounds and other sensors. Easy to understand and use, the devices and sensors are intended to enhance learning by encouraging students to make new connections between different ideas and areas of knowledge by using information they already have. This learning is done through participating in projects facilitated by means of coaching, as opposed to lectures or step-by-step guidance.

Media Experience Tour Spring 2018
The Spring 2018 Media Experience Tour class together with their instructor Assistant Professor of Journalism Dr. Stephen Kimotho (center), pose for a photo outside the American University in Washington D.C. during their trip to the U..S. from April 24 to May 5, 2018. PHOTO: NASHON OWANO

By Nashon Owano

Students of the Spring 2018 JRN 4911 Media Tour Experience Class made history when they became the first class to make a tour of an international media house to understand internal media operations.  Led by their lecturer Dr. Stephen Kimotho (Assistant Professor of Journalism), the eight students were exposed to a world-class, professional environment relating to print media, public relations and broadcast journalism, during their trip to New York and Washington D.C.

In New York their highlight was a visit to the prestigious NBC Studios, one of the leading broadcasters in the world. Located at The Rockefeller Center, NBC Studios are home to award-winning U.S. shows such as Saturday Night Live, America’s Got Talent, Law & Order, Blindspot, The Blacklist and the Chicago PD/Fire/Med shows. One of the longest-running TV scripted show – Days of Our Lives – is produced there.

The group obtained backstage access to Late Night with Seth Meyers and Megan Kelly Today recording sets. At the end of the tour the eight students were offered an opportunity to simulate the production and hosting The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon show, which previously hosted Late Night with Jimmy Fallon show.

By Antonio Longangi

The Counseling Center’s Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT) Week, for this summer semester, was held from Monday, July 9 to Friday, July 13 on campus. Aiming at sensitizing and raising awareness on matters concerning HIV/AIDS, reproductive health, and behavior change, activities were held under the slogan “Your Future, your responsibility.”

“Ignorance has bred all kinds of health-related myths,” remarked Miss Sylvia Kerubo (IBA Sophomore), a volunteer counselor during the VCT week, adding that “It is important for the university community to adopt a responsible approach to health, and set an example for the rest of society.”

HIV/AIDS counselling and testing, STIs screening as well as information sharing on sexual reproductive health and contraception were the main focus for the week’s activities, as well as breast and cervical cancer screening and sensitization, provided under tents set up in strategic locations around campus.

TOFAC 2018
Prof. Toyin Falola speaks during the opening session of the Eighth Toyin Falola Annual International Conference (TOFAC) on Africa and the African Diaspora held at the auditorium on Tuesday, July 3, 2018.Photo: Antonio Longangi

By Diana Meso

USIU-Africa in partnership with the Toyin Falola Annual International Conference (TOFAC) hosted the Eighth Conference on Africa and the African Diaspora themed “Beyond History – African Agency” from July 3-5.

The three-day event which was the first to be held in Kenya, aimed at demystifying and identifying ways in which Africa can innovate the future for itself based on a progressive embrace of a young, productive, optimistic and endowed Africa. It was attended by over 200 participants representing at least 15 countries.
During the opening session at the auditorium, the Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza welcomed the participants saying that the conference plays a key role in Africa’s redefining itself as the driver of its destiny, by harnessing the productive energies of its ample youth and capitalizing on the synergies of its diaspora and making peace with the necessity of forging global alliances.

Prof. Toyin Falola- after whom the conference is named - also welcomed the delegates describing the conference as a platform to engage on the need to produce knowledge at the highest levels of excellence.

In her keynote speech, Professor of Security Leadership and Development at King’s College, London, Prof. Funmi Olonisakin, urged participants to change the way Africans are being listened to as part of a transformative process.

“Those who matter most are not speaking overtly, if we do not look for answers, by looking beyond that which is presented to us, we might actually in essence be sustaining the very inequalities and inequities that create the kind of continent in which our agency is hijacked, and appropriated,” she said.

Rise Learn Partnership
From Left: Mrs. Cecilia Mweru (Career and Placement Officer), Ms. Bernice Nasimiyu (Director, Solution Finders Development Center), Mr. Stephen Olieka (Human Resource Segment Head at Safal Group), Mrs. Emily Kamunde (Director of Rise & Learn), Prof. Paul Zeleza (Vice Chancellor), Amb. Prof. Ruthie Rono (DVC Academic and Student Affairs), Ms. Hellen Ambasa (Director Legal Services and Company Secretary), Ms. Mina Kaburu (Career and Placement Officer) and Mr. James Ogolla (Director University Advancement) during the MOU signing on Friday, June 22, 2018 at the VC’s board room.Photo: Antonio Longangi

By Cecilia Mweru and Ernest Anguru

USIU-Africa and Rise and Learn Mentorship Group (RLM)- a product of Rise & Learn Limited signed a Memorandum of Understanding to provide mentorship to graduate students aimed at equipping them with skills needed for their career progression. The event was held on Friday, June 22 and was attended by USIU-Africa Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza, DVC Academic and Student Affairs Amb. Prof. Ruthie Rono and Director of Rise & Learn Mrs. Emily Kamunde.

The partnership provides a platform for RLM Group to compliment and support the Placement and Career Services (PACS) Student Mentorship Program through various trainings that will enable graduates explore their career options, identify and prepare for opportunities in the job market and access internship, volunteer and job openings in partner organizations.

The inaugural program will be launched on Wednesday, July 25 during the Career Fair Graduate Connect networking event and will admit 40 graduates who will be matched with their individual mentors.The event was also graced by Human Resource Segment Head at Safal Group Mr. Stephen Olieka, Founder and Director, Solution Finders Development Center Ms. Bernice Nasimiyu, Director of University Advancement Mr. James Ogolla, Director of Legal Services and Company Secretary Ms. Hellen Ambasa, and Placement and Career Services officers Ms. Mina Kaburu and Mrs. Cecilia Mweru.

RLM Group is a consortium of Human Resource professionals from well-established HR firms in Kenya whose objective is to provide mentorship to young people.
Rise & Learn Limited is a HR Consulting and Training firm aimed at impacting lives and multiplying the impact through training.

Interested participants may register through contacting Career and Placement Officer Mrs. Cecilia Mweru on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. /0730 116 778 or through visiting the PACS office, 2nd Floor, Freida Brown Student Center.
AIESEC digital Training
Ms. Vivienne Ethangatta (Digital and Social Media Manager, Safaricom) discusses Digital Marketing during the Digitalk Campus Edition hosted by AIESEC USIU-Africa on Thursday, June 28 at the Freida Brown Student Center. PHOTO: ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Peter Mbwana & Antonio Longangi

On Thursday June 28, USIU-Africa’s AIESEC and IT club hosted the Digitalk Campus Tour- an initiative of Eyeballs Marketing firm aimed at sensitizing and training young people on ways to access and exploit opportunities provided by the development in technology.

The event entailed a panel discussion comprising of Safaricom Digital and Social Media Manager Ms. Vivienne Ethangatta, Brighter Monday Chief Executive Officer Mr. Emmanuel Mutuma and Local artiste Mr. Anthony Gitau famously known as Anto Neosoul.

Ms. Ethangatta encouraged participants to keenly take up internship opportunities adding that they act as a leeway to the next big step in their career life.
“I was able to turn my passion into a career by proactively rejuvenating the social media platforms of the companies I interned with, through practical learning, I was able to set myself on my current career path,” she said.

Mr. Mutuma pointed out that with the current technology advances, there is easy access to digital platforms which makes the digital space one of the most competitive in terms of capturing and maintaining the attention of an audience, adding that it is crucial for participants to identify their competition to help in curving out one’s niche audience in order to effectively stand out.In conclusion, Mr. Gitau gave three key elements of surviving in the digital space; practicing self-awareness, identify primary audience and being resilient. He also encouraged participants to take advantage of networking opportunities as they expose one to industry experience.
Nairobi Half Life
Prof. Paul Zeleza (Vice Chancellor) together Mr. James Ogolla (Director, University Advancement) and Dr. Rachael Diang’a (Assistant Professor of Film) receive 200 copies of the Nairobi Half Life film from Ms. Grace Kago (Kenya Film Commission) (Right) and Mr. William Wakasiaka (Ginger Ink) (Second left).

Dr. Rachael Diang’a and Diana Meso

The School of Communication, Cinematics and Creative Arts (SCCCA) received a donation of 200 copies worth Ksh. 100,000 of the Kenyan award-winning film Nairobi Half Life from Ginger Ink- a Kenyan-based film servicing and production company on Thursday July 5.

The donation presented by Kenya Film Commission’s Ms Grace Kago and Ginger Ink representative Mr. William Wakasiaka was received by the Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza and Assistant Professor of Film Dr. Racheal Diang’a. This will be used as training materials for students taking Film Production and Directing and Animation courses and help the students appreciate and support local films.

In his remarks, Prof. Zeleza thanked the donors and pointed out that USIU-Africa aims at positioning SCCCA as one of the best film school in the region by responding to industry needs and economy’s demand through tapping into the vast creative talents in the University and the increasing realization of the place of creative industries in Kenya’s economy.

The film will be screened at the Old Gym-TV Room on Tuesday, July 10, 2018 from 5 pm.
Nairobi Half Life is a 2012 Kenyan drama film that tells the story of an aspiring actor who travels from his rural home to Nairobi with the hope of achieving his dreams but instead ends up tangled with a mob of criminals.

Criminal Justice Conference 19062018 36
Participants pose for a group photo following the opening session of the USIU-Africa Criminology and Criminal Justice Conference held from June 19-20 in the Library and Information Center. PHOTO:ANTONIO LONGANGI

By DR. Simeon P. Sungi

On June 19 and 20, scholars and practitioners from the East African region and other parts of the world were hosted by the School of Humanities & Social Sciences, to deliberate on issues relating to “Access to Justice and the Enforcement of Rights in Criminal Courts in East Africa.

The USIU-Africa Criminology and Criminal Justice Conference is an annual conference established by faculty in the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, to respond to the new direction spelt out in the University’s Strategic Plan 2015 – 2020, which focuses on research and bridging the gap between industry and academia.

The Organizing Committee received 40 abstracts, addressing the seven sub-themes: Development of penal reform in East Africa and beyond; Non-lawyers and justice delivery; Promoting international humanitarian law through the criminal justice system; Corrections and rehabilitation; Access to justice and human rights; Gender and access to justice and Accessing legal aid in the criminal justice system in East Africa and beyond.

Drug Awareness Day 26062018 95
Staff members and volunteers from Counseling Center march on campus, to mark the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking on Wednesday, June 27. From Left to right (front): Ms. Noelle Khayanje (Senior Counselor) and Ikeije Obinna (Psychology major). PHOTO: ANTONIO LONGANGI

By Simeon P. Sungi

This year’s commemoration of the International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking was held for the first time in Africa, at the United Nations Office in Nairobi on June 26, where the inaugural World Drug Report 2018 was launched.

The International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking was established by the United Nations General Assembly resolution 42/112 of December 7, 1987 to strengthen global action and cooperation.

In delivering his keynote address, Nairobi Senator Hon. Johnson Sakaja, noted that the Government of Kenya is firmly resolved to respond to the illicit drug epidemic, even suggesting that Parliament should strengthen legislation dealing with drug abuse, for example, amending the Pharmacy and Poisons Act (Chapter 244) of the Laws of Kenya to seal all the loopholes that allow, for instance chemists to sell prescription drugs without proper prescription notes from a doctor. He also emphasized the need to focus on mental health in responding to individuals who are drug addicts.