Ten percent more students will be admitted to public universities in 2015 than were admitted in 2014.
The Commission for University Education Chief Executive Officer Professor David Some said on Monday that 10 to 15 percent more than the 56,000 who got places in public university last year will get slots in 2015 due to increased capacity.
“We receive from the universities what their capacities are and capacities are pegged on staff and infrastructure,” he explained.
Education Cabinet Secretary Jacob Kaimenyi welcomed the increase given five percent more students attained the minimum university entry grade of C+ in 2014 than in 2013.
But even given this increase, going by Some’s estimates, 59 percent of the 149,717 who sat their Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations will have to seek admission in privately run universities, colleges or technical training institutes (TTIs).
However, the current 78 TTIs in the country are not sufficient to meet the demand of those who attained C+ and above but will not secure university places and the 333,903 who did not meet the minimum university entry grade requirement.
The government is however in the process of establishing 60 more TTIs in the constituencies that don’t have them in order to boost their enrolment capacity to 75,000 students.
Still, this will fall far short of the needed institutions.
Back on university admission, Kaimenyi called on the commission to, “strengthen,” mechanisms that will ensure students pursue the courses of study they selected.
“They must pursue courses of their choice,” he said. “If you pursue something because of some other factors, you might not succeed as you should because your heart is not there.”
He also directed the commission to develop a national system of ranking universities by September as he urged the institutions to incorporate industrial attachments into their course work to ensure graduates possessed the necessary job skills.
“It’s not true that our universities are churning out half baked graduates. I am a product of the same system but let’s not have a repeat of the situation that led engineering students to riot because their professional body felt they weren’t properly equipped for the demands of their profession,” he said.
Kaimenyi and Some were speaking at a consultative forum between the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology and university managements.