Kenya on Thursday launched its first virtual public university, the Open University of Kenya, in a bid to boost access to higher education and skills development.
President William Ruto, who presided over the awarding of the charter to the new institution, said his government was committed to offering affordable and quality education that is aligned with the country’s economic transformation agenda.
“Our objective is to deliver a 100 per cent transition to higher education,” he said at the event held in Konza Technopolis, a flagship project of the government’s vision 2030.
He said the Open University of Kenya will enhance the capacity of public universities and provide opportunities for Kenyans to pursue professional training of their choice wherever they are.
“This will endow enterprises with a sustainable capacity to be innovative and competitive,” he added.
The president said the new university will be incorporated into the Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) portal in time to enroll students for the academic year commencing September.
Students placed via KUCCPS will benefit from government financial support through the new funding model, he said.
The Open University of Kenya will offer courses in various fields, including education, business, health sciences, engineering, agriculture, law, and social sciences.
It will use online platforms, digital devices, and satellite technology to deliver its programs.
The president was accompanied by Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi, Cabinet Secretaries Davies Chirchir, Ezekiel Machogu, Alfred Mutua, Makueni Governor Mutula Kilonzo Junior, MPs, among other leaders.
He also toured the Konza Technopolis, which is expected to host several technology firms, research institutions, and innovation hubs.