Bidco, MKU sign agreement on student training

Manufacturer Bidco Africa Limited and the Mount Kenya University (MKU) have entered into a partnership which will see learners from the higher learning institution gain practical skills on industry requirements.

The partnership reached through the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MOU) will see the two work closely on joint academia and industry programs.

“Bidco will offer to our students the much needed industrial field training in the fast pace industrial world. The MoU gives our students a chance to get attachment and internship opportunities at Bidco after which upon successful completion, they may either be retained as employees or get employed elsewhere,” noted MKU Acting Vice Chancellor Peter Wanderi.

On his part, Bidco Africa Group Director Chris Diaz noted the move aligns to government efforts on the upskilling of youth coming out of tertiary institutions.

“With Kenya’s unemployment rate at a high of about 9.3 percent and about 55 percent of youth unemployed, this partnership is timely. It comes at a time when we are expanding with ventures in new innovative product categories,” he said.

The collaboration responds to calls on learning institutions to embrace industry benchmarks to keep up with an ever changing job environment. This as graduates continue to face higher odds in landing job opportunities in a high-skill dependent market.

According to a 2018 report by the Federation of Kenyan Employers (FKE) on the mismatch of skills, about 66 percent of all university graduates are not prepared for the work place forcing employers to look externally for a substantive workforce.

Bidco and MKU are expected to hold joint conferences, workshops and mutually agreed topical areas to align curriculum to industry demands.

Ultimately, the collaboration is expected to introduce students to entrepreneurship with soft skills training to gear them up to be adequately productive at work beyond the seeking of the limited job opportunities.