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Kenyan Varsity Launches a Biosafety and Biosecurity Program
Saturday, 2024/05/18 | 08:40:58

Figure: Kenya's Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST) has launched its pioneering Biosafety and Biosecurity degree program heralded as a transformative initiative in biosafety training in the country.


MMUST Vice Chancellor Prof. Charles Mutai lauded the program's uniqueness and its potential to address the critical shortage of qualified professionals in biosafety and biosecurity within the country. Echoing these sentiments, Prof. Judah Ndiku, a distinguished figure within the university, emphasized the program's pivotal role in cultivating autonomous professionals equipped to navigate the complex landscape of biosafety and biosecurity. With global challenges on the rise, Prof. Ndiku underscored the pressing need for skilled individuals capable of ensuring the safe application of biotechnological advancements across various domains, from agriculture to healthcare.


"This course is intended to provide biosafety fortification for the country in the future, especially in an era of increased exposure to bio-hazards exacerbated by urbanization," Prof. Ndiku affirmed, encapsulating the program's overarching mission.


Nestled within the Department of Medical Laboratory Sciences, the degree program promises a comprehensive blend of theoretical knowledge and hands-on experience, empowering students with a profound understanding of the subject matter.


The curriculum, meticulously crafted to meet contemporary demands, encompasses a wide array of topics including biological risk assessment and mitigation, laboratory design, and biocontainment, as well as biological non-proliferation and cyber-biosecurity. Moreover, the university pledges to expose students to esteemed international experts, fostering a dynamic learning environment that remains abreast of cutting-edge technologies and trends in the field.


As the ribbon was ceremoniously cut to inaugurate the program, Dr. Pamela Sitienei, the Chairperson of the University Governing Council, urged students and stakeholders alike to master their domains while drawing inspiration from esteemed partners such as the University of British Columbia and the International Federation of Biosafety Associations. "These collaborations serve as pillars of support, enriching the educational journey and amplifying its impact on a global scale," she remarked.


The launch coincided with the unveiling of the university's strategic plan for 2024-2028, demonstrating a steadfast commitment to excellence and innovation across all endeavors. Furthermore, in line with the Government's plans for green growth and climate action, those attending the launch seized the opportunity to contribute to environmental sustainability by planting tree, an emblematic gesture of collective responsibility and stewardship.


For more information and updates on agri-biotech and biosafety in Africa, contact Dr. Margaret Karembu at mkarembu@isaaa.org.


See https://www.isaaa.org/kc/cropbiotechupdate/article/default.asp?ID=20820

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