Deputy Vice Chancellor, Finance, Planning and Administration, Prof Esther Gicheru,
Ag. Deputy Vice Chancellor, Co-operative Development, Research and Innovation, and Ag. Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Academic Affairs, Prof Kennedy Waweru,
Deans and Directors present,
Professors of the University present,
Members of staff present,
Student leaders present led by the Student’s President Collins Brandon,
Ladies and gentlemen Good morning,
Today, I am thoroughly delighted to join my colleagues in welcoming a new cohort of students joining The Co-operative University of Kenya for the next phase of your academic journey. Allow me to commend you for the choice you made to be here. We appreciate the faith and trust you have in this University and we shall endeavour to deliver as per your expectations and even beyond your expectations.
The Co-operative University of Kenya is a Public University and is one of the oldest institutions of learning in Kenya and in the region whose history dates back to 1952. The University acquired its charter as a fully chartered public university on 7th October 2016. In a few weeks’ time, we are going to celebrate our 6th Anniversary as a Chartered University. This University has been mandated with training for the vast Co-operative sector in Kenya which commands over 45% of the Nation’s GDP by engaging in training, research, and innovation that is aimed at creating solutions for the movement and other related fields. This only goes to show you how important this institution is with regard to the growth of our economy and the huge responsibility that is placed on your shoulders to realise the dreams and aspirations of this great nation.
Fresh Men and Women,
Allow me to congratulate you on the excellent academic performance that has enabled you to be placed at the CUK. We have a team of dedicated and qualified faculty and support staff who will guide you during your stay here and who are keen to give you the best experience during your stay. I wish to assure you that our operations as a University are student-centred and no efforts are spared to enable our students to achieve their dreams and exploit their full potential. This year we are delighted to admit another 2,186 students for the Degree, Diploma and Certificate levels. Our University has continued to grow and we have some new academic programmes where we have students placed for the first time this year.
Fresh men and women
Our University is a reputable institution in Kenya and the region and as such you will find academic life here demanding; our training and efforts to produce competent graduates remain our key priority. You have come here with one objective; academic pursuit. Your success here is dependent on your hard work, focus and personal effort; You need to remember that you are a student 24/7, 365 days a year. Keep away from trouble and trouble will keep away from you. I know you have been well briefed and counselled about drug and alcohol abuse, and the issues of examination irregularities. You have been taken through the student regulations and guidelines. Kindly ensure that you comply and stay on the right side of the said rules and regulations.
As you have been advised by the Dean of Students, HIV/AIDS is real, causing lots of pain to the Nation and families both financially and socially. As you join this University as your academic partner, be careful not to indulge in irresponsible sexual relationships. The country has recently experienced many tragic love-related incidents involving University students and their partners. The sponsor culture has also become entrenched in many local Universities where endowed balding men have come to prey on young ladies and sponsor their expensive lifestyles. Many girls have also gotten unwanted pregnancies. We have also witnessed several unfortunate cases of abortions taking place at the University. We advise you and especially the girls to be extremely careful in relationships as you usually have the most to lose. Also, live within your means. Incidences of suicide have also tremendously increased in Universities. Kindly seek the audience of the Students’ Counsellor or Dean of Students’ office if you are undergoing any psychological pressure or stress. The challenge of Drug and Substance Abuse in Universities is very real. There are drug peddlers who peddle the drugs around looking for customers who get them hooked on the drugs. The University has very strict regulations on drug and substance abuse and the peddling of drugs. As you are aware, this is a criminal offence under the laws of Kenya and is dealt with very severely. Another vice that is destroying many Kenyan homes including University students is an addiction to sports betting. According to 2016 data Sports betting amassed KSh 56,498,568,760. SportPesa led with revenues of KSh 43,162,779,684. Others are Betin, Lotto, Betway, Elitebet, mCHEZA, BetYetu, JustBet, Betika. Some students have betted all their fees and ended up committing suicide. You are well advised to keep away from these. We would like all of you to graduate the way you reported and to hand you back to your parents and guardians in one piece.
I implore all of you to join clubs and societies as part of your extracurricular activities. Participate in a sport of your choice and use your free time to interact with your fellow comrades. I am aware that great efforts have been made by the Dean of Students Office to avail the necessary facilities for your extracurricular activities. Kindly take advantage of these activities as they go a long way in making you an all-rounded student and a better person.
Information, as they say, is power and such I would advise that you ensure you always keep yourselves updated with University events and activities. Visit our website www.cuk.ac.ke on a regular basis to find out what activities and events the University is having, the MoU’s that we have engaged in and leverage on the opportunities thereof. Follow us and like our pages on our official social media platforms; Twitter: @CoopVarsityKE; Facebook: @CoopVarsityKE and; Instagram: @Coop_University. We are alive to the critical role social media plays in modern society and more so during these uncertain times as such, we share important information and communications on these social media platforms. Feel free to engage us on all our communication channels, we appreciate the personalized touch they present and the information and concerns shared will be addressed with utmost diligence. Activate your student email addresses as this will be a critical channel with which information and important communication will be shared.
Fresh men and women,
We appreciate that sometimes we may fall short of your expectations or if you may feel that there is some important information you wish to disclose to us. We have an open door policy and appropriate channels which are available for use when you wish to communicate with us. Feel free to walk into any office in this great university and share your ideas and views with us. We do not treat complaints negatively but as an opportunity for you as our customer to give us feedback. Compliments on the other hand give us a pat on our backs in the areas we have done well. As such, if you have any compliments and/or complaints, please feel free to write to us via our official social media platforms and the email: email@example.com, via our online Compliments/Complaints register that can be accessed via our official website www.cuk.ac.ke/public-information-page or through our Ombudsman mobile number +254 790 313331.
As I conclude,
I urge you all to strike a healthy balance between your academics and other activities. Enjoy your time at University, learn all you can, make friends, and make the best use of your time. Let us all take care of ourselves even as we conduct our studies.
With those few remarks, I wish you all a fruitful learning experience at The Co-operative University of Kenya. Thank you very much for choosing us as your partner in your academic journey.
I wish you well and may our God, the Giver of everything Bless you.