The Commission for University Education (CUE) has been in the limelight for terming 133 courses useless. This has caused tension among students studying the mentioned programs and graduates as well. CUE says the courses have not been approved.
Where was this commission when universities were busy offering ‘useless’ courses? Therefore, when a government body says that certain courses are useless, when did education become useless in Kenya?
It all began when the government started laying too much emphasis on education. President Mwai Kibaki’s error introduced free primary education that saw many children join school. It was a nationwide campaign that focused so much on education without increasing job opportunities.
Universities were mushrooming all over the place on storey buildings. You would find bars, shops, and restaurants on first floors, universities and colleges on second floors, and hotels on the third. Such an environment does not create an environment conducive for learning.
Education became a commercial activity with business-minded individuals opening private colleges in different parts of the country. Public universities opened campuses in various parts of the country. Colleges were upgraded to university colleges. Getting quality education was not a guarantee. Being a university graduate was no longer envied. Everyone was learned anyway.
Classes became crowded especially in public universities. The work load was too much for lecturers that some of them became overwhelmed and did not care about the quality of education they were offering.
At the end of the day, we have so many graduates from colleges and universities with few employment opportunities to scramble for.
Education becomes useless when students are taught to study for jobs. They leave school with no intention of starting their own businesses. A few of them become enterpreneurs. The rest tarmac and struggle to get jobs. There are many jobs online to try out. A graduate has a laptop, a smartphone, and a data plan but never uses them to earn money. Laptops are for watching movies and disturbing neighbours with loud music.
Education becomes useless when the government does not control the quality of education in institutions of higher learning especially public universities and colleges. It becomes useless when anyone can open a college. It becomes useless when CUE fails at its mandate.
Instead of telling Kenyans how certain courses are useless or not approved, tell us what your plans are in making sure that no more useless courses are being offered in our learning institutions. Tells us you have identified the problem and fixed it instead of causing alarm among students and graduates when it is the commission that failed at checking, monitoring, and approving courses.