Public Lecture on Climate Change at Karatina University
Karatina University was privileged to host the 1st series of 2020 Public Lectures on Friday, 17th January 2020 at the Conference Hall, Main Campus with a talk by an eminent Climate Change expert, Dr. Richard Munang, currently the Africa Regional Coordinator for Climate Change at UNEP. This is part of the wider university mission to strengthen and anchor as the driver of global environmental agenda having rebranded as The Green Entrepreneurial University. The lecture was in line with our strategic location and other green initiatives already established and implemented towards the “Green University”.
Dr. Munang’s presentation was titled “From Extreme Vulnerability to Competitiveness: Changing the Narrative of Africa’s Development Under the Changing Climate”. Dr. Munang is guiding the actualization of UN Environment’s climate resilient development strategy for Africa through coordinating implementation of diverse projects in key economic sectors especially agriculture, and energy as well as informing strategy and policy development from project lessons. He is also the Africa Ecosystems Based Adaptation for Food Security Assembly (EBAFOSA) coordinator in-charge of the strategic and operational roll-out in over 40 African countries.
In his introductory remarks, Dr. Munang appreciated that Karatina University is the greenest university in the world based on his assessment as a widely travelled global scholar. His talk concentrated on the matters of climate change, exposing the extreme vulnerability that the world is in due to global warming that has very likely exacerbated global economic inequality. The emphasis was on leaving no one behind as countries aspired towards the realization of Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 and for Africa, our Agenda 2063 that inspire transformation for everyone.
Inviting Dr. Richard Munang to Karatina University was fronted through our collaborative partnership with UNEP. The UN body of Environment has recognized Karatina University as one that perpetuate the global environmental issues that mitigate against climate change. This is our contribution as a university and as per our vision of “Inspiring Innovation and Leadership”. The impacts of Climate Change have already resulted to severe storms and floods, prolonged rains and droughts, raging fires, new and emerging infectious diseases and the compounding threats to food security. If action is not taken, climate change will define the health profile of current and future generations, will challenge already overwhelmed health systems, and undermine progress towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Against this backdrop, Dr. Munang painted a sympathetic situation of increasing vulnerability in the world, with examples of soaring unemployment among the thousands of youth globally. He emphasized that in Kenya, just like the rest of the world, vulnerability is manifested in drought, floods and food and nutritional security through its effects on food availability and quality, access, and distribution. Climate change has exacerbated malnutrition, reducing nutrient availability and quality of food products.
The point of departure from the earlier gloomy review in his lecture was the realization of abundant opportunities available in efforts towards mitigating climate change. This, he advised would be through innovating on climate resilient actions, products and purposes that would attract the global funding available in trillions of US Dollars. He urged Karatina University students and staff alike to identify and innovate in synergistic strategies including innovation in solar driers, reversal of food losses in value chains and other economic fundamentals that will address societal problems. This also encompasses equipping people with relevant skills and knowledge to provide adaptation measures to meet food security such as greater investment in crop diversification and integrated agriculture-aquaculture practices.
In his concluding remarks, Dr. Munang emphasized that Human Capital can be the force to drive Climate Change especially the talented skillful youths. He urged the audience to look for opportunities available in climate change. He reiterated that to achieve meaningful action towards Climate Change, there is need for selflessness and collectiveness.
Schools and Departments
The School of Agriculture and Biotechnology aims at training highly skilled manpower for the Kenyan Agricultural sector. The School currently offers several undergraduate programs that include Horticulture; Food Science and Nutrition; Agricultural Economics and Resource Management; Agricultural Extension and Rural Development.
The School comprises of three departments namely:-
- Food Science and Nutrition
- Agricultural Resource Economics & Economics
- Crop Science
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The School of Business (SoB) aims at producing managers and business leaders of international repute. We strive to achieve this through imparting our students with best management and entrepreneurial knowledge, skills and practices that are globally accepted. Our students are given the requisite skills that are vital in management and growth of the economy.
The School has four Departments namely:
- Department of Business and Entrepreneurship
- Department of Human Resources Development
- Department of Tourism and Hospitality Management
- Department of Economics
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The School of Education and Social Sciences aims at producing graduates who will serve in various capacities in the Education sector, Social welfare organizations and Government agencies locally and internationally. This School has positioned itself for the realization of the National Vision 2030 by developing programs that address the social and political pillars envisaged in the vision.
The School has five departments namely:
- Department of Humanities & Languages
- Department of Social Sciences
- Department of Education Foundation
- Department of Planning and Curriculum
- Department of Psychology and Communication Technology
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The School of Natural Resources & Environmental Studies is dedicated and receptive to engagements for mutual benefit to the society and the graduates. Its mandate is to create an avenue for information interchange pertaining to Natural Resources Management for a better today and tomorrow. The School empowers graduates with appropriate knowledge and skills necessary in promoting entrepreneurship and community development in natural resources utilization and conservation of the environment.
It comprises two departments namely:
- Department of Natural Resources
- Department of Environmental Studies
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The School of Pure and Applied Sciences (SPAS) aims at producing professional scientists for careers in industry, teaching and research. The school focuses on imparting knowledge in the areas of chemical, biological, Actuarial and information technology sciences. Our programs are designed to ensure that graduates are equipped with practical and intellectual skills relevant to the needs of the society.
The Departments in this school include:
- Department of Mathematics, Statistics & Actuarial Sciences
- Department of Computer Science
- Department of Physical Sciences
- Department of Biological Sciences
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