Society / Education
Thursday, 18 Aug 2016 16:10 EATnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.com
Elgeyo Marakwet County will soon get a fully-fledged university following the upgrading of the Tambach Teachers Training College. The new institution will be called Kerio Valley University.
The Commission for University Education, which regulates higher education in Kenya, has given preliminary approval for the university which is due to start operations in January 2017.
A team of officials from CUE visited Tambach TTC on Monday and established that the college had significantly complied with regulatory criteria. It would, however, need to meet a few more conditions for its conversion into a university before it can begin to enroll students.
The development will boost the political fortunes of Governor Alex Tolgos who had made establishment of a university in Elgeyo Marakwet a key campaign subject. The governor has committed Sh160 million of the county’s funds to the project.
Monday’s meeting was attended by the CUE officials, members of the board of management of Tambach TTC and selected local leaders. Local MP, James Murgor of Keiyo North constituency who participated in the meeting, said Tambach TTC will meet all the CUE conditions by November.
Murgor told reporters that Kerio Valley University will initially be a constituent college of Kenyatta University before applying for its own charter.
“Kenyatta University has committed to help run Kerio Valley University until the college shall have matured to operate on its own,” said the MP.
Governor Tolgos’ administration had given priority to establishment of the university in efforts that were led by Dr Stella Kiprono, the County Executive for Education and Technical Training.
However, local leaders were divided for months over the location of the institution. While some leaders wanted Tambach TTC to be upgraded to a university, others preferred that the college should be left to continue in its current state while a university is established at Tot in Marakwet East constituency.
To bridge the differences, Mr Tolgos appointed a task force comprising of the leading intellectuals from Elgeyo Marakwet to determine the location of the university, its academic programmes and the location of campuses.
The Task Force recommended the upgrading of Tambach TTC and establishment of campuses at Biwott Secondary School in Keiyo South and St. Benedict’s Arror Girls Secondary School in Marakwet West.
The university’s academic programmes will include sports management, animal sciences, mining and traditional medicine, which the Task Force said are relevant to the people’s needs.