The Chinese Embassy in Kenya on Tuesday hosted a farewell reception cum award ceremony for more than 200 local students who are beneficiaries of scholarships from the Asian country.
A total of 182 Kenyan students who benefited from this year’s Chinese government scholarships are scheduled to leave for China later this week to pursue various studies in some of the leading universities.
The students drawn from local tertiary institutions will pursue disciplines like engineering, diplomacy, medicine, law and Chinese language at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels.
Speaking at the event in Nairobi, Zhao Xiyuan, minister counselor at the Chinese Embassy in Kenya said that education and cultural exchanges are at the heart of Beijing’s bilateral cooperation with Nairobi.
“In pursuing the Belt and Road Initiative, China is working closely with Kenya and other countries in all fields including establishing a multilateral mechanism for cultural and people-to-people exchanges,” said Zhao.
“We are boosting educational cooperation and increasing the number of exchange program for students,” he added.
He said that China-Africa cooperation in strategic fields like education, science, technology and culture has blossomed in recent times while underscoring the role of the youth to sustain it for the long haul.
A total of 50 students from under-privileged backgrounds who are enrolled in local universities, will benefit from Chinese Ambassador Scholarships to help cater for tuition fees and other incidentals.
Tom Amolo, political and diplomatic secretary in Kenya’s ministry of foreign affairs said that China has rallied behind Nairobi’s efforts to bridge skills gap through award of scholarships to local youth.
“Education remains a key component of our cooperation with China and it is our hope that the youth who benefit from the scholarships will come back and help build the country,” said Amolo.
Adhere Cavince, a representative of 2019 scholarship beneficiaries, said that Kenyan youth are keen to pursue education in China given the country’s economic and technological progress.