Students from the Machakos University stand to reap big after the institution entered into a working partnership with the Konza Technopolis Development Authority (KoTDA) to improve their skills on Information Technology (IT).
According to KoTDA Chief Executive Officer Engineer Joseph Tanui, the authority plans to assist young upcoming scientists from the university to hone their skills once a planned a high end research IT hub is completed by next year.
Tanui who was addressing the Konza Technopolis Ecosystem Initiative, Machakos Edition at the university today, said the decision was arrived at due to the proximity of the institution to the multi-trillion project.
“We are ready to walk this journey together b y administering quality education and supplementing skills. With an innovative culture we will surely create the leaders of the future. We believe the Machakos innovation hub we launch here today will be a catalyst towards shaping tomorrow’s ideas and inventions,” he explained.
According to Tunai, the center to be dubbed as “Konza Innovation hub” will play a leading a role in linking the industry with the academy with a view of enhancing research and innovations.
Engineer Tanui noted that a triple helix approach to development is key to unlocking great potential within the institutions of higher learning.
“By administering quality education and supplementing skills with an innovative culture is sure to create the leaders of the future .We believe the Machakos innovation hub we launch here will be a catalyst towards shaping tomorrow’s ideas and inventions ,’’he added.
On his part ,Konza Technopolis chairman Dr Reuben Mutiso has termed the new working partnership a timely engagement which will bring along critical players in the innovation ecosystem in advancing science ,technology and innovation agenda.
Mutiso said Kenya is a country with a rich wealth of ideas that can be employed in as one of the key drivers of the economy and hoist the nation among the league of developed nations in the world.
“Kenya is a knowledge based economy driven by abundance wealth of ideas .As such, our core objective in setting up Africa’s technology Hub is to develop a world class infrastructure and technology that will facilitate research, education, and foster business growth,” he said.
Machakos University Vice Chancellor Professor Lucy Irungu lauded the move by the Konza Technopolis team saying it would help tap the young talents in the institution and promised to continue supporting the initiative wherever necessary.
“As a premier university with a pedagogical background in Engineering and Technology, the opportunities in engaging young scholars’ promises to shape the innovation space of this country. Indeed, upon completion Konza City will employ 17,000 of our finest brains in the county”, she said.
The university has so far set aside sh 2.5 million towards boosting research and innovation among students interested in pursuing science oriented courses.
Once complete, the Konza Technopolis is expected to attract business process outsourcing, software development, data centers, and disaster recovery centers, call centers and light assembly manufacturing industries; and build a university campus focused on research and technology as well as hotels, residential areas, schools and hospitals.
It is also intended to include a science park, a convention centre, shopping malls, hotels, international schools, and a health facility.
Once complete , the project under the ‘Silicon Valley’ brand tag is expected to generate 20,000 jobs with the bulk of them going to the proposed Konza Technopolis University graduates.
By Samuel Maina and Roselyn Kavoo