Prof. Olive Mugenda Biography
Olive Mugenda whose full name is Olive Mwihaki Mugenda has been the vice chancellor of Kenyatta University from 2006 to March 2016. She is the first woman vice chancellor of a public University not only in Kenya but in East Africa.
Appointment to the Judiciary
On 13th February 2018 President Uhuru Kenyatta nominated Prof Olive Mugenda to the judicial service Commission. The nominatiuon came after President Uhuru Kenyatta announced that Attoney General Githu Muigai had resigned.
Olive Mugenda Education Background
Graduate student at the Eastern and Southern Africa Management Institute (ESAMI), Master of Business Administration (MBA)
Graduate student at Lowa State University (USA), PhD in Family and Consumer Sciences
Graduate student at the University of Nairobi, Masters and PhD degrees in Family Studies, Education and Research
Undergraduate student at the University of Nairobi, Bachelor of Education (1st Class Honours)
Olive Mugenda Job History
After she graduate from the University of Lowa she returned to lecture at Kenyatta University.
She specialized in “women’s education, home economics, statistics and research methodology”. She was promoted from Lecturer to Head of Department, to Dean of Faculty. Then she was appointed Deputy Vice Chancellor for Finance and Planning.
In 2006, when the position of Vice Chancellor at the university was advertised, she applied and beat three other applicants, all male, for the job. As Vice Chancellor, one of the major accomplishments is the establishment of Kenyatta University Referral Hospital, a 500-bed referral hospital, wholly owned by the university, which cost US$95 million to construct.
In October 2013, Professor Olive Mugenda was appointed Chairperson of the Council of the Association of Commonwealth Universities. The Association is the oldest international universities network, with over 500 universities, in 37 countries as members. The secretariat is based in London, United Kingdom.
Areas of Specialization:
2. Women/Girls Education
3. Family and Consumer Economics
4. Research Methods and Statistics
Olive Mugenda Board Membership
- Chair of the Association of Commonwealth Universities
- Member of board of regional and global bodies
- Vice-President of the International Association of Universities
- Member to the Steering Committee, Strategic Partnerships for Higher Education Innovation and Reform (SPHEIR) based in the United Kingdom
- Board member, African Centre for Transformative & Inclusive Leadership Initiative, a partnership between Kenyatta University and UN Women
- Member of the Steering Committee for the Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI)
- Director of Nation Media Group
- Non-Executive Director for UBA Kenya Bank Limited.
- Member of Kenya National Examinations Council
- Member of Lake Victoria Research Awards Initiative’s Scientific Advisory Committee.
- Member of Functional Illiteracy Research and Education Board
- Member of AAU’s Working Group on Higher Education.
- Member of Africa-US Higher Education Initiative Advisory Board.
- Member of Working Group on Higher Education (a committee of Association of African Universities).
- Member of Partnership for Higher Education in Africa Steering Committee
- Member of Moi Girls High School Board of Governors, Kamangu, Kiambu
Olive Mugenda -Funded Projects:
- Mapping Out Best Practices for Improving Access to Higher Education for Orphaned and Vulnerable Students in Kenya and Rwanda funded by the Association of African Universities
- Kenyatta University Reforms Project, funded by Partnership for Higher Education in Africa
- Enhancing Female Participation and Performance in Mathematics, Science and Information Technology in Primary Education in Kenya: Intervention Strategies: Funded by The Rockefeller Foundation
- Enhancing Female Participation and Performance in Mathematics, Science and Information Technology in University Education in Kenya: Intervention Strategies. Funded by the Ford Foundation
- Review of the Kenyatta University Strategic Plan. Proposal funded by The Rockefeller Foundation
- US – Kenya Citizens Exchange Program, A Proposal funded by the State Department, Bureau of Cultural Affairs
- Intervention Strategies to fight HIV/AIDs at Kenyatta University; publication of HIV/AIDs Policy. Funded by National Aids Control Council (NACC).
- Proposal on Regional Conference on the Role of Universities in the Attainment of Millennium Development Goals. Funded by AICAD, IUCEA, DAAD and OSSREA
Prof. Olive Mugenda Publications
- Higher Education in Kenya: Challenges and Opportunities, African Higher Education Collaborative, 2008
- Financing University Education in Kenya: The Role of Stakeholders, Higher Education Loans Board, 2008
- Enhancing Access to University Education in Kenya, 2007
- University Roles in Meeting Aspirations for ICT and Economic Development, Partnership for Higher Education in Africa, 2006
- Higher Education Policy, Research and International Collaboration, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, 2006
- Gender Inequality in the Governance and Management of Higher Education, 2006
- Research Methods: Quantitative and Qualitative Approaches, Africa Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS), (1999, Revised 2003)
- Life Skills, Sexual Maturation and Sanitation: What is (not) happening in our Schools ? An Exploratory Study in Kenya. Weaver Press, Zimbabwe, 2002
- Redefining and Actualizing Research in African Universities: A Multi-faceted Approach for the 21st Century, Journal of Practice in Education for Development, 5/2, 2000
Olive Mugenda Awards
- Iowa State University Distinguished Alumni Award,2008
- ESAMI Meritorious Award for exemplary academic performance in the MBA program, 2005/2007
- The Elder of Burning Spear Presidential Award, 2006
Olive Mugenda Recognition
Prof. Mugenda is a recipient of the Ernst and Young Lifetime Achievement Award and the Honorary Fellow award of the Kenya Institute of Management.
Prof. Mugenda was recently awarded the highly competitive and prestigious Impact Research and Science in Sub- Saharan Africa (IMPRESSA) Award by the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM).
Prof. Mugenda was recognized for her “outstanding contribution to Africa’s Development through institutional transformation and the creation of an African Entrepreneurial University Model with development relevance.
In February 2016, the French Government through the French Embassy in Nairobi awarded Prof. Mugenda the Order of Academic Palms – a national order of France for Distinguished Academics and figures in the world for her efforts in steering the University’s growth.
Olive Mugenda Family
Olive Mugenda is married to Professor Abel Mugenda, BA, MA, MSc, PhD, an academic at the University of Nairobi.
They are blessed with four children; two daughters and two sons, Albert, Christopher, Lynda and Angela. Their daughter, Angela, is an alumnus of Iowa State University, like both her parents
Prof. Olive Mugenda Contacts
Contact Address: P.O. Box 43844 Nairobi 0100
Tel: +254 20 8710901-19 Ext 57200
Olive Mugenda News
Updated March 2016
Prof Olive Mugenda Declines Retirement Package
Former Kenyatta University Vice Chancellor Olive Mugenda has declined to take a Sh100 million sendoff package. The university council had proposed the hefty package for Prof Mugenda as a sign of appreciation in recognition of her impressive development record.
Mugenda left office Sunday after a decade at the helm. The proposed hefty package had been greeted with outrage with a majority of Kenyans taking to social media to express displeasure of the move by the university council. Kenyatta University Director of Communication Machua Koinange confirmed that Mugenda declined the offer.
“She had said she didn’t see the need of such a package since she was doing her job as a public servant who expected no special treatment upon her retirement,” Mr Koinange said.
He said Mugenda’s letter stating that she had declined the offer would be handed to the council today. Mugenda’s move to decline the retirement package comes a day after Council Chairman Ratemo Michieka on Saturday defended the package terming it as reasonable since it has to be approved by the Ministry of Education.
Prof Michieka dismissed reports, allegedly emanating from the University Academic Staff Union (Uasu), to the effect that it planned to pay Mugenda Sh100 million.
He however, declined to disclose what the amount was. Among the proposals said to have been approved by the council following a report from the Terms and Conditions of Service committee, include 10 days holiday in a country of her choice accompanied by a spouse or a friend at the cost of Sh2.5 million, and a personal vehicle for Sh10 million.
Mugenda was also to be bought a retirement home in the form of a flat in a suitable residential area of her choice worth Sh20 million. The package was only to apply to her due to her unique and unprecedented contribution to Kenyatta University.
During her last official function (the opening of the Education Complex,) at the university on Thursday, Mugenda dismissed claims by Uasu (KU Chapter) officials saying the university had bought a car for her as a send-off gift.
“If the council feels the VC has done well why is Uasu complaining? In
fact they say I was given a car, can I actually get a car, what is wrong even if a VC is given a car?” she asked “They should not politicise these things and should let me go in peace. If I was to steal millions of shillings, I had the time to do so but I have not stolen a single cent from the university,” she added.
Paul Wainaina, who has been deputy vice chancellor in charge of
administration has replaced Mugenda in an acting capacity.
Source: Standard Digital Entertainment.
Olive Mugenda Photo