- Minister counsellor Rebecca Ekuam tells students their education journey is not just about personal growth but also contributing towards Kenya's progress.
- Says as Kenya and China mark 60 years of diplomatic relations, education has been central to the partnership.
Kenyan students in China have been urged to take knowledge and experiences gained back home to improve their communities.
Speaking during Kenyan Night 2.0 in Beijing on Saturday, Minister Counsellor at the Kenyan embassy Rebecca Ekuam told students their education journey is not just about personal growth but also about contributing towards Kenya's progress.
"You have the power to be catalyst for change, drive innovation and inspire those around you. Remember you are not just students but also ambassadors of our culture and values, and I urge you to be role models for the young ones, show them the values of hard work, integrity and perseverance,” Ekuam said.
The event organised by Kenyan Students Association in Beijing brought together Kenyans studying and working in Kenya as well as embassy officials.
In attendance was also Unicef Representative in China Ama Sande and UNAIDS Country Director in China Dr Erasmus Morah.
Ekuam said as Kenya and China mark 60 years of diplomatic relations, education has been central to the partnership.
"The university courses offered by Chinese institutions have opened a world of possibilities to Kenyan students. These courses tick in excellence and innovation and have provided our students with knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in the global arena,” she said.
The diplomat added that the scholarships are not only financial aid but also bridges connecting Kenya to the world of advanced learning and technology, and symbolize China's commitment to Kenya's youths' future, the country's development as well as the exposure to Chinese job market, " an invaluable aspect of the education journey".
"It offers a unique perspective on one of the world's most dynamic economies, fostering a global mindset and practical skills that are crucial in today's interconnected world,” she said, noting that the contribution of the students to Kenya's growth is essential.
"As we mark this milestone in celebrating Kenya-China relationship, lets renew our commitment to learning, cultural exchanges and to the shared prosperity of our two nations," Ekuam said.
Education attaché Innocent Mogunde encouraged the students, saying recent appointments of alumni of Chinese universities to top government positions was testament to the quality of training they are undergoing, a remark that was reiterated by Sande.
Mogunde gave examples of Cabinet Affairs PS in DP's Office Idris Dokota, who was a PhD student at the University of International Business and Economics, and incoming deputy ambassador Lynette Mwendwa.
Mogunde informed the students that discussions are underway to ensure students directly access internships in China, especially those undertaking medicine.
Kenyans have in the last 40 years benefitted from Chinese scholarship opportunities, ranging from undergraduate to PhD degrees, as well as technical and vocational training.
This year, for example, 48 students won various government scholarships to study in different universities in China.
This is part of the bilateral partnerships with China, at the continental level under Forum on China–Africa Cooperation and under President Xi Jinping's 8-point BRI agenda in promoting education exchanges and training.
During the Dakar FOCAC meeting, China and African leaders agreed that under Chinese government scholarship programs, China will continue to train professionals in relevant fields, and make joint efforts to further improve training programmes with the view to align them to current developmental priorities of African countries.