Orientation for the inaugural class of undergraduate medicine and nursing students in Kenya kicked off with pomp and colour. The class of 121 students – 60 for Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSc Nursing) – Direct Entry and 61 for Bachelor of Medicine, Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB) – had a chance to interact and learn about AKU.
“We are really honoured to have you with us. You are joining this programme not only to learn new things, but you are also a resource and will bring so much into the classroom. I encourage you to network with each other and other students at AKU," said Professor Eunice Ndirangu-Mugo, Dean at AKU's School of Nursing and Midwifery, East Africa.
This is a milestone for the University in Kenya which is popularly known for its postgraduate programmes in medicine, nursing, midwifery and media and communications. Targeting high school leavers, the two programmes aim to transform the higher education landscape in the region.
Professor Lukoye Atwoli, Dean at the Medical College, East Africa encouraged the students telling them to pursue teamwork and lifelong learning. “We don't think that in solving people's health problems, any single individual can have all the solutions and provide them successfully. From day one, we hope you have the idea that all of you are being educated so that when a health problem comes your way, you'll solve it collaboratively."
The students were visibly excited. They had undergone a competitive admission process and were overjoyed to be selected into the inaugural class.
Anthony Otieno, a BSc Nursing student said, “I chose nursing because both my parents are nurses and I saw the inspiring work that they do and I wanted to continue with the same."
“Medicine gives me a field to make an impact in society," said Brenda Wangari, an MBChB student. “I'm looking forward to a chance to interact with different people and learn from my peers."
Chepkirui Winny, a BSc Nursing student said, “I've always been passionate about nursing and I would really like to impact humanity through nursing."
“Community building is a big deal for me. I look forward to doing that in the medical field and specifically in mental health," said Brian Mburu Maina, an MBChB student.
The two programmes will be offered simultaneously in a unique setting that brings student doctors and nurses together to gain interprofessional education.