Thursday, May 26, 2022

Universities whose graduates don’t have jobs to lose State funding

University Funding in Kenya: Public universities in Kenya will have to help their graduates get jobs if they want State funding. This is according to the revised formula for the allocation of State funds to public universities, which has been recommended by the Universities Fund. The formula is based on five performance indicators, including absorption of an institution’s graduates in the job market, research and training on financial management for top officials.

“Performance-based funding is funding aimed at allocating a portion of universities education budget according to specific performance measures. It makes funding allocating more transparent and more competitive,” the University Fund said in a statement. “The key performance indicators to be considered will be four-year graduation rate, graduate employability rate (one year after graduation) and research inputs.”

According to the 2021 Economic Survey, Kenya had 452,089 students last year, up from 412,840 a year earlier. In addition, Kenya has 102 public universities and campuses. The new formula comes at a time when Kenya is grappling with rising unemployment rates. For instance, according to data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) covering the quarter ended March 2021 shows that 1.23 million out of the total of 2.49 million jobless Kenyans aged between 15 and 64 — and who qualify for the labour force — were not actively looking for employment.

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“The State has come under pressure from the World Bank to close and merge some of the cash-strapped public universities, citing duplication of courses and the need to cut spending. The rise in university enrollment puts pressure on the government to create jobs for the graduates whose number stood at 62,000 in 2002 amid a slowdown in the creation of new jobs,” a report that appeared in the Business Daily on the new formula said.

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