On the 20th and 21st of July 2023, Egerton University buzzed with energy and excitement as it played host to the 5th National Forum for Universities, TVETs (Technical and Vocational Education and Training institutions), and Agricultural Stakeholders. The event took place at the state-of-the-art Physical Science Complex, attracting attendees from across the nation. With the theme, 'Promoting Entrepreneurship and Innovation for Youth Empowerment and National Development,' the forum delved into crucial discussions aimed at driving Kenya's progress towards a more innovative and economically empowered future.
The event's significance was highlighted by its esteemed chief guest, Hon. Simon Chelugui, the Cabinet Secretary for Cooperatives and Micro and Small Enterprises. His presence underscored the government's commitment to supporting youth entrepreneurship and innovation as powerful tools for national growth. Addressing the audience, Hon. Simon Chelugui emphasized the need for collaborative efforts between academia, industry, and government to create an ecosystem conducive to entrepreneurial success.
Vice Chancellor Prof. Isaac Kibwage of Egerton University, the host of the event, welcomed participants and set the tone for the forum. In his opening remarks, Prof. Kibwage highlighted the role of Universities and TVETs in nurturing young minds and fostering a culture of innovation. He stressed that the theme of the forum resonates deeply with Egerton University's vision of producing graduates who are not just job-seekers, but job creators.
The two-day event featured a diverse array of activities, including insightful panel discussions, interactive workshops, and showcases of innovative projects. Experts from academia, industry, and government shared their experiences and insights on how to effectively promote entrepreneurship among the youth. Workshops were designed to provide participants with practical skills and tools to kick-start their entrepreneurial journeys, covering topics such as business planning, funding strategies, and leveraging technology for innovation.
A highlight of the forum was the recognition of outstanding entrepreneurial and innovative projects by students and young entrepreneurs. This not only provided a platform for these young minds to shine but also served as an inspiration for others to pursue their innovative dreams. The projects showcased a wide spectrum of ideas, from sustainable agriculture practices to tech-driven solutions for local challenges.