[Issue 87] Media Monitoring: Extract of Press News on Higher Education in Africa

  1. Tuko

Masinde Muliro University Officially Registered as TVET Institute, to Enroll NYS Sponsored Students (Kenya)
Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST) has officially been registered as a Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institute. This makes the Kakamega-based university the first in Kenya to be certified as a Technical and Vocational College in accordance with the TVETA Act 2021 Section 20 (1). The learning institution was issued the registration certificate on Wednesday, June 2 by the Technical and Vocational Education and Training Authority (TVETA). With the new registration, the learning institution will now operate under the name Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology TVET Institute. With the recognition, MMUST is now licensed to offer General Agriculture, Horticulture, Building Construction, Civil Engineering, Disaster Management, Security and Intelligence, Fitness Instruction and Recreation Management and Sports Coaching (Craft) Diploma courses According to the institution, as appeared on its official website, beginning September 2021, it will enrol its first set of four hundred and eighty (480) students with a maximum of sixty (60) students per course. “With this recognition, we can now admit students and receive capitation from the Ministry of Education. We believe that these students can transition from the Diploma level and attain a PhD in these courses,” said Vice-Chancellor Solomon Shibairo while receiving the registration certificate and training license. The Director, TVET, Samuel Waweru, said that the recognition is in harmony with the University’s Vision and Mission since MMUST is a science and technology institution. As a fully recognized TVET Institute, MMUST will offer Competence-Based Education and Training (CBET) programmes that lean towards skills development In another development, the institution signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the National Youth Service (NYS). The areas of strategic partnership between these two institutions include; linkage to the labour market, offering sports management course, complementary provision of infrastructure and human resource to facilitate training for the NYS trainees and TVET training in various disciplines. With this, MMUST will receive NYS sponsored students. The University is expecting the first batch of about five hundred (500) students in September 2021 after the required inspections have been conducted. In other news, MMUST resolved to close its Nairobi, Kisumu, Kapsabet and Mumias satellite campuses.
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  1. Times Higher Education

Be there or be square: the strange art of lecturing (Global)
Nine o’clock on a cold, dark, winter’s morning. You are trapped. Two hundred pairs of eyes are staring down intently at you from a height. Deep in the ancient reptile stem of the brain, angry voices shout at you: “Why are 200 people all staring at you from a height? Because they are going to kill you and eat you. Why else?” In almost 20 years of lecturing – at the universities of Southampton, Cardiff and Durham – they never did. And yet a nagging edge of this fear always remains for many lecturers, even when something alarmingly extraordinary becomes more ordinary over time. The sense that eyes are more of a problem than bodies was pinpointed nicely by a colleague of mine at Southampton. Her solution to lecturing nerves was simple: she took off the glasses she wore for distance vision. In the early days and

weeks of mastering this art, the theory of the carefully written lecture can easily melt under the fierce heat of all those curious eyes. For those who find this a problem, it is a problem of pressure, of too much presence, too much energy, compressed into one space for a brief time. Who would have guessed how many lecturers would miss all this during the long months of lockdown? Most lecturers would agree that if you were giving a lecture blindfold to a receptive audience in a theatre, you could still sense some degree of reaction and presence. But even the most scintillating public speaker is not going to sense anything if the students scattered across a virtual live lecture do not turn their microphones on. (Even software formats that give the raw numbers of those present do not guarantee that all of them are actually listening.) Like so many other things, lecturing has been drastically reshaped by the global pandemic. Yet this extreme enforced adaptation should also prompt us to reflect on just how strange lecturing is, even under ordinary conditions. Lecturers are implicitly distinguished by their title. There are tutors and teachers, but at the top of the pyramid there are lecturers. And in theory the prestige attaching to the title is hard-earned. No one else does this. Not actors, not rock stars, not politicians. You think and write and shape the content. You deliver it in one take, with no backing band, and with the only drug on offer (at least for me) being too much coffee. For much of your working week, your job necessitates spending too much time alone. For those few lecturing hours, you must stay above water as the fizzing waves of 100-200 teenagers’ attention beat down upon that fragile lectern. It is not an easy job. Small wonder so many people are unable to do it – including quite a lot of those who bear that distinguished title of lecturer. There are many ways to lecture well and many to lecture badly. So, is there one basic secret to success? I want to argue that there is. The lecture itself of course needs to be well written, properly structured, thought-provoking and timed for the slot. But those dozen sheets of paper are not the lecture. If there is one secret to successful delivery, it is probably this: be there.
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