A record 8,428 graduates were conferred degrees and awarded diplomas by the Chancellor, Dr. Vijoo Rattansi at the University of Nairobi’s 62nd graduation ceremony.
At the fete, Prof. Patricia Kameri- Mbote went down in history as the first woman to receive the Degree of Doctor of Laws (LL.D) of the University of Nairobi.
The graduation summary was 737 Diploma awards, 5413 Bachelor degree awards, 54 Post-graduate diploma awards, 2130 Master degree awards, 27 Fellowship awards, 56 Doctor of Philosophy degree awards and 1Higher Doctorate Degree Award.
In her speech, the Chancellor had a warm congratulatory message for the graduates.
“To all who are graduating, we are gathered here in your honour. I am very proud of you and your monumental achievement. Many began this journey with you but a number fell by the wayside. By sheer effort, unwavering support of your families, God’s abundant grace and alignment of many factors, you have made it to this day,” she said. “Be magnanimous in your successes. However high you fly, you must not lose the respect that you have for those who made you who you are.”
Dr. Rattansi also spoke on the current leadership transition taking place in the University.
“During this transient period of recruitment of the Vice Chancellor, you have exhibited exemplary conduct. You have been calm and accommodative of the process and your words and actions have been manifestly modest, dignified and well measured. In presenting yourselves in this way, you have brought honour to this University. You have proved that succession ought not to be a noisy and messy affair, adjectives which often attend succession processes of similar institutions. I therefore cannot thank you enough. From the bottom of my heart, asanteni sana.”
The Chair of Council, Prof. Julia Ojiambo also congratulated the graduates.
“To our graduates of the day, we wish you well. We hope that we spared no effort in giving you the best that we could. We hope that we contributed to making you a better version of yourself. We hope that armed with the skills and competencies you have acquired, you will apply yourselves with dedication and that our mark of quality will be manifested through your selfless and unblemished service to both God and man,” she said.
Further, Prof. Ojiambo added her voice to the recruitment of the Vice-Chancellor.
“My address will not be complete without taking cognisance of the fact that there is an ongoing process of recruiting a Vice Chancellor. I wish to recognize our staff and students and respective unions and union leadership for your patience and for giving this recruitment process a chance. I wish to also thank you for trusting the institutions rightfully vested with the process,” said Prof. Ojiambo.
The ag. Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Mbeche congratulated the graduating class of 2019.
“Congratulations for a job well done. We are proud of you. We extend our appreciation to the people who made it possible for you to complete your studies. Your lecturers and the stakeholders whose contribution through provision of scholarships, mentorships and internships opportunities has enabled the University to continue producing market ready graduates,” said Prof. Mbeche. “The latest research on graduate employ-ability index indicate that graduates from the University of Nairobi are the most preferred. So count yourself lucky by default of being a graduate of this University.”
The Chairman of the University of Nairobi Alumni Association, Mr. Isaac Awuondo called on the graduates to join the association and give back to their alma mater.
“The Association eagerly looks forward to your connection with your alma mater in order to willingly give-back to the community which nurtured you,” he said. “You can do this initially by registering with the Association whose membership categories range from Annual to Life Membership.”
The Valedictorian, Bridget Neema, from the School of Medicine, had an inspiring message for her fellow graduates.
“Do not fear failure but please be terrified of regret. Outside the cocoon of the university, the consequences will be greater, the stakes will be higher. When we walk out of these gates today into what we call ‘real adulting,’ we will receive a lot of shut doors, a lot of rejected applications, way more no’s than yes.”
Congratulations to the graduating class of 2019!