Kenyan Math and Science teachers will benefit from a game-changing scholarship program designed to help them become more effective educators in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and encourage their students pursue education and careers in these fields.
The programme dubbed Honeywell Educators Space Academy, has been rolled out by the New York Stock Exchange-listed US conglomerate, Honeywell, which opened offices in Nairobi recently to tap East Africa’s booming energy, airline, security and construction markets.
Honeywell’s President for Global High Growth Regions, Shane Tedjarati, said the programme which has been responsible for some remarkable transformations among teachers globally will be expanded to Kenya to help develop talents in technology and engineering fields.
“We want to enhance productivity by developing talents in markets where we operate and by giving Kenyan teachers who benefit from the scholarship programme will be able to change their students’ mindset towards STEM education and have more pursue related careers,” said Tedjerati during a visit to Nairobi.
Applications for the 2016 programme targeting practicing teachers of science or math handling students in primary and secondary schools are done in November. The teachers must be certified educators in a public or private school system.
The Honeywell Educators is a five-day program where the teachers participate in 45 hours of intensive classroom, laboratory activities.
Kenya is aiming to be fully industrialized by the year 2030. If this goal is to be achieved, it means there should be better performance in sciences and math but the performance in the subjects has continued to be poor compared to Arts subjects in Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (K.C.S.E.).
The multinational whose annual turnover of $40.3 billion is almost as big as Kenya’s GDP of $55 billion (about Sh5.5 trillion) developed the scholarship programme in partnership with the US Space and Rocket Center (USSR).
Honeywell, which has opened an office in Nairobi’s Westlands, is involved in a wide range of activities including the manufacture of aircraft engines, and production and installation of security and airport equipment.
“We were looking at five to six east African countries but decided the best place for our regional office was Nairobi due to the vibrant market, talent and geographical location,” said Tedjarati in an interview during a visit to Nairobi.