The county government of Kakamega will offer scholarships to 12 students worth over Kshs 200 million to 12 students who came top among the sub-counties in last year’s KCSE exams. The 12 are meant to study various courses in engineering and medicine at the Shanghai University of Science and Technology in China starting this September.
Flagging them off, the Kakamega county governor Wycliffe Oparanya said that it is a move meant to address the huge shortage of skilled manpower in the county, and sustain development. He explained that the county faces a shortage of professionals, especially in engineering, medicine, and Agriculture sectors and thus felt the need to train students from the county.
According to him, the 12 will be in China for five years, with full sponsorship as they study their courses and will be expected to work for the county government for five years after training.
“We are experiencing a shortage in skilled manpower, with devolution, most people prefer to work in their own counties thus making it difficult to get skilled people even when you advertise,” said governor Oparanya. Citing medicine as an example, Oparanya said that the county is in need of over 200 doctors but only has 140 thus making it hard to access the best healthcare.
He added that he preferred China because of their advanced technology calling upon the scholars to take advantage of the opportunities and bring the same knowledge and expertise to Kakamega. He further called upon parents whose children are beneficiaries to chip in with further support for their children given that the county government will only cater for tuition fees.
The Kakamega county deputy governor Philip Kutima warned them that China has a different culture and environment and that they should not let it affect their performance in any way. He asked them to work extra hard to ensure that they make the county proud.