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Economy

Technical courses enrol 54pc of varsity entrants

George Magoha
Education Secretary George Magoha. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

More students prefer technical courses to art-based programmes, latest Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (KUCCPS) figures show.

The data released Tuesday shows 54.2 percent or 66,661 of the 122,831 students placed to degree courses will join science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programmes. In comparison, arts and humanities attracted 56,170 students or 45.7 percent of those placed to universities.

“This year’s placement data indicates that 54.2 percent of the 122,831 applicants will join STEM programmes, which are critical for producing skilled workforce required for the attainment of the Big Four agenda,” said Education Secretary George Magoha when he released the report.

The admission data indicates the University of Nairobi (UoN) absorbed nearly half of the 630 candidates who scored a mean grade of A in the 2019 Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) exam. The UoN enrolled 313 of the candidates followed by Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology’s 117 and Moi University’s 53 students.

Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery remained the most competitive course followed by architectural studies, dental surgery and civil engineering.

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Overall, the universities declared 145,129 slots but filled 122,831 translating to 84.6 percent of available capacities.

Some 2,632 candidates who scored C+ and above in the 2019 KCSE examination and qualified for placement to degree programmes opted for diploma courses in technical institutions.

Prof Magoha said of students preferring to join technical vocational education and training Institutions (TVETs) has been growing over time.

“In 2019, the number was 1,269. This is a clear indication that concerted efforts to improve enrolment in TVET courses are yielding fruits,” he said.

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