How 22-Year-Old Student Founded Zetech University While at UoN Hostel.
Access to university education has steadily improved across the country since the turn of the century, though much remains to be done.
Higher education institutions have grown at an unprecedented rate during this time period. During this time, Zetech College evolved from an ICT training facility to a full-fledged university.
However, as the institution’s founder, Ken Mbiuki, can attest, the institution’s rise since its inception in 1999 has not been easy.
Mbiuki had an interest in telecommunication while studying Mechanical Engineering at the University of Nairobi in 1997, at the age of 22. He offered to train his colleagues in his hostel.
His interest in IT, on the other hand, grew as the global technological bubble expanded, requiring him to find a larger space to accommodate many students.
Mbiuki previously told Business Daily that the pressure he felt from his fellow students, who were yearning for the skills in a world without Twitter and Facebook, aided his training success.
“Initially I had two to three students but the number went up between the end of 1997 to 1999, growing between 200 to 300 students. The decision was inspired by the pressure from the students,” he stated at the time.
He moved to a larger classroom, but demand continued to grow, prompting him to open an IT college. He could earn up to Ksh200,000 per month at the time.
According to the college’s history, the college was originally named Zenith Technologies but soon expanded to a college and combined the two names, Zenith and Technologies, to form Zetech.
The institution embarked on an expansion drive over the next 17 years, eventually receiving its Letter of Interim Authority in 2014.
Driven by a desire to meet the high demand for quality education, the institution embarked on a 15-year strategic blueprint manual that outlined the aspiration to achieve University status.
Following a successful inspection by the Commission of University Education, the institution received a Letter of Authority to offer University programs, resulting in the establishment of Zetech University in August 2014.
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The office rent was Ksh15,000 when he first started out, but he has since expanded to purchase the institution’s headquarters on Thika Road.
“We diversified our programmes from Information Technology and computing packages to hospitality and business courses and eventually mass communication and community development to widen the scope of the programmes,” he noted.
Today, the University serves approximately 6,000 students across multiple campuses. It employs more than 300 people.