The IT club organized the second edition of the USIU-Africa Spring Hackathon, on Saturday, March 3 at the Science Center.

The hackathon which was sponsored by Africa's Talking and the Moringa School, attracted student technologists, programmers and network analysts, from 10 universities.

Students from Dedan Kimathi University, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology (JKUAT), Laikipia University,KCA University, Riara University, St. Paul's University, Strathmore University, Technical University of Kenya, University of Nairobi ,USIU-Africa and Zetech University ran for seven hours and required two kinds of participation: creative software application development and a Capture The Flag network penetration testing competition.

The latter competition sufficed as a test of the participants' ability to find and use computer network vulnerabilities to acquire an obscured message, the flag. The former demanded an application of a combination of creative, context-driven thinking and sharp programming skills.

The theme of this year's event, Research to Market Challenge: ICT Supported Science and Technology Innovations for Africa's Development, made the hackathon rubric more colorable in that participants were required to conceive promising solutions in fields ranging from e-business and e-health to data-mining and the Internet of Things (IoT).

“A hackathon (otherwise termed codebrawl or codefest) is a social event that gathers technologists to engage in collaborative programming or hacking, and is often characterized by rigorous ad-hoc concept planning and development.”

Upon completion of the event's hacking activity, a team of panelists (School of Science and Technology Representative, Lochemem Bruno Michael, Africa’s Talking developer leads Calvin Karundu, David Afam Osemene and Steve Okwi, as well as Dr. Patrick Wamuyu (Assistant Professor of Information Systems) and Moringa School’s Ms. Betty Asava) evaluated the projectcentric presentations, and declared the project team from Dedan Kimathi University winners of the grueling seven-hour programming contest.

Their Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) application, typically built to interact with telecommunications service providers - dubbed LEJA - was predicated on providing simple ledger interactions for Small and Medium Enterprises.

Other podium winners, the Auto-Chem team from Dedan Kimathi University, and the USIU-Africa Google Home project team developed a smart pharmaceuticals directory and a voice-powered message sending utility for Google's Artificial Intelligence (AI) assistant respectively. Also awarded were the creators of the IoT-centric smart-farming project which monitors moisture levels in soil.

Standouts from the network hacking contest which included a Dedan-Kimathi University-USIU-Africa partnership and Riara University contingent.

The hackathon evoked a coalescence of ideas - it featured many ebullient individuals of debutant, intermediate, and modestly advanced disposition intent on showcasing their talents. Despite the rigors of the hackathon the most challenging of which are plan and personnel management under stringent time conditions, the participants were able to learn lessons and create blueprints for contextually-aware project enhancement.
The Department of Insurance is hosting this year’s first Health Talk on Wednesday, March 14 in the auditorium from 10am - 12pm.

The talk which has been organized by Jubilee Insurance Company, in collaboration with Mayfair Health Services, will specifically tackle lifestyle diseases such as cancer, diabetes and hypertension, among others.

General education on the existing medical cover will also be undertaken, while related questions will be answered by Jubillee Insurance representatives.

Tests for Blood Pressure/BMI will freely, be offered thereafter at the Health Services Center, while all other tests will be charged and deducted from the medical check-up benefit in the Jubilee Insurance Cover

Students will only be eligible for the free services due to the limitations on their existing medical cover.
Students have been invited to participate in a global internship competition, where the grand prize will be a prestigious three to six-month paid internship at British American Tobacco (BAT), and a trip to the global firm’s London headquarters, where they will have the opportunity to network with senior BAT professionals and gives them the opportunity for a massive career kick-start!

The competiton dubbed “Battle of the Minds” involves formation of a team, which then research a market, develops a product idea, then prepares an original business plan.

BAT will be looking for participants who not only possess leadership qualities and have a strong desire to be top performers, but also can build strong teams that work well with people who have different abilities and perspectives.

Participants will be asked to accurately assess markets to discover what they are missing, and thus present a plan on how BAT can remain competitive in saturated markets and revolutionize customers’ experiences.

Interested undergraduate students are requested to register at on or before Thursday, March 15.

Interested participants may also contact Career Services (0730116796) or the Internship Office (0730116780) between 8am and 5pm from Monday through to Friday, for any further clarification.
On Friday, March 9, the Department of Human Resources announced vacancies in specific roles in various departments.

The Department of Procurement is looking to hire a Chief Manager, who will be responsible for leading and managing procurement efforts throughout the university, and report to the Director of Finance.

Within the same Division, the Department of Finance is looking for a new Principal Accountant who will be responsible for management of the Accounts Receivables Section and the Credit Control Office, and report to the Chief Accountant.

The Department of Health Services has a Clinical Officer vacancy. The successful candidate will be responsible for providing medical health care, counseling and support services to members of the University, and will report to the Principal Medical Officer.

The ICT Division is looking to hire an ICT Officer in the Multimedia Unit of the Service Delivery department. The successful candidate will be responsible for providing direction for all hardware and software systems that deliver multimedia services to the university community.

The same department also has a vacancy for an ICT Assistant, who will be responsible for capturing incoming hardware and software calls from various user stations and resolving them.

The University is also looking a hire a Telephone Operator/Receptionist, who will be based at the reception area in the Administration Building, and report to the Chief Admissions Officer.

The new Bachelor of Arts in Animation and the Bachelor of Arts in Film Production and Directing programs are each in need of a Technician, who will be providing technical and academic support for students and faculty.

Both programs have significantly increased their lab space and equipment in preparation for their first intake this coming semester.

Finally, vacancies now exist for Teaching Lab Technologists, whose primary responsibilities will be maintaining the smooth running of teaching laboratories, as well as ensuring users receive maximum benefits from available resources.

Further details regarding key responsibilities, minimum educational and professional qualifications, as well as desirable personal attributes and competencies are to be found on our website at

Applications are to be delivered to the Director of Administration on or before Friday, March 23, 2018.

In an appended notice, the Human Resources Department sought to warn potential candidates against unscrupulous individuals purpoting to secure interviews and/or appointments in return for financial or other considerations. The Director of Administration affirmed that all communication regarding vacancies emanates from the Human Resources Department’s official address (hr@usiu.
Mr. Javier Serrano (Assistant Professor of Spanish & Literature) was invited by His Excellency Martin Gomez Bustillo - the Ambassador of Argentina in Kenya - to deliver a talk about the literary universe of the famous Argentinean writer Jorge Luis Borges on Wednesday, March 7.

The talk was to mark the official launch of the Jorge Luis Borges Cultural Centre, which was attended by  several LatinAmerican Ambassadors (Brazil,  Chile, Costa Rica and Mexico), the Kenyan Spanish Speaking  Association (SSA) and the Association of Teachers of SpanishKenya (ATS-K).

Three USIU-Africa students of the Spanish Minor (Esther Mwanza, Moses Muchoki and Ryan Saffideen) accompanied Mr. Serrano on this  occasion and had the opportunity to put their Spanish into practice with the Spanish-speaking community in Nairobi.

Mr. Serrano is the current President of FIAPE - the largest association of teachers of Spanish worldwide - as well as Vice President of the Association of Teachers of Spanish in Kenya (ATS-K).
On Friday, March 2, the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences invited Dr. Carrie Waterman, an Assistant Researcher in the Department of Nutrition at University of California Davis to speak at the School’s second colloquium this semester.

Dr. Waterman spoke on the wide-ranging benefits of the Moringa Tree (Moringa oleifera) to over 30 members of staff, faculty and students from the School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences at the Science Center’s Lecture Theater 5.

Her current collaboration with the World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) in Nairobi, Kenya on the Moringa Tree (Moringa oleifera), is in line with her research interests in the expansion and improvement of the use, production, and processing of the Moringa tree worldwide, including community involvement and development.

Dr. Waterman enlightened participants on the tree’s therapeutic applications such as in malnutrition, diabetes, and HIV; as a nematocide and biofertilizer in agricultural uses; and in livestock feed for improved animal nutrition and milk production.

She specifically addressed students of Pharmacy, asking them to not limit their career options to pharmaceutical organizations, but to expand them to include community outreach, capacitybuilding, basic research, business development, and entrepreneurship.

She further invited interested students to join her in designing research projects on the Moringa tree, which included funding proposals.

The colloquium was organized by Dr. Caroline  Kahiri (Assistant Professor of Human Physiology), and follows the the first  Colloquium  on “Contemporary Advances and Precincts of Biopharming as Drugs’ Production Systems” by Dr. Apollo  Maima  (Assistant Professor of Pharmacy) in January 2018.

The School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences has every intention of continuing to highlight and promote interes in the School’s research areas from within and outside the university, by host ing two colloquiums every semester.
Intense competition was witnessed last weekend when our various sports teams emerged the best in different tournaments and leagues they took part in.

The Cricket team emerged the first in the Universities Cricket Tournament organized by the Nairobi Provincial Cricket Association (NCPCA) at the Ruaraka Sports Club. Both the men’s and ladies’ hockey teams defeated Wananchi men and women from Uganda to win the Hope Sports Uganda Hockey Tournament in Lugogo, Uganda.

In addition, our men’s teakwood team scooped the 1st position while their female counterparts clinched the second position in the 2nd Kenya University Sports Association (KUSA) indoor championship at USIU-Africa.

The men’s rugby team thrashed Catholic University of Eastern Africa (CUEA) 19-10 in the ongoing Kenya Rugby Union (KRU) Championship that took place at the rugby pitch. The team will host Egerton University this weekend.

The ladies basketball team crushed Daystar University 38-11 while the men’s team lost to Mt. Kenya University 34-42 in the second leg of KUSA League. The ladies will meet Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology (JKUAT), Kenyatta University and Mt. Kenya University as the men battle out with Daystar University and JKUAT at JKUAT this weekend.

The men’s soccer team secured a 1-0 win against Mt. Kenya University while their female counterparts lost by a similar margin (0-1) against Daystar University in the KUSA League. The men are set to meet.

Mt. Kenya University and Daystar University on Saturday, March 3 and 4 respectively at JKUAT, while the ladies play against JKUAT and Mt. Kenya University at the same venue.

Still, in the KUSA League, the ladies volleyball team beat Daystar University 3-2 on Saturday, February 24 at Kenyatta University. The ladies will travel to JKUAT this weekend to play against Getsa University and Kenyatta University on Saturday, March 3 and Mt. Kenya University and St. Paul’s University on Sunday, March 4.

The Karate men emerged third in Kata and Kumite while the ladies clinched the second position in Kumite and third position in Kata in the 2nd KUSA Karate Indoor Championship at USIU-Africa. Both teams will compete in the 3rd KUSA Karate Indoor Championship playoffs and finals on March 17 and 18 at Kenyatta University and USIU-Africa respectively
Financial Aid Office scheduled a briefing session for all financial aid beneficiaries on Friday, March 2, to present opportunities available for those seeking financial assistance to attend graduate school either in Kenya or abroad.

The meeting was addressed by alumnus Mr. Douglas Owino (Founder, Scholarship Academy – Africa), and Rhodes 2018 Scholar and International Relations alumna (Class of 2017) Ms. Ruth Nyakeriaro.

Mr. Owino urged his audience to pay attention to undergraduate grades and cocurricular activities given the weight they lend to scholarship applications.

Mr. Eannes Ongus (Principal Fundraising Officer) - himself a former financial aid receipient - also shared crucial information on funding choices available to a current or aspiring graduate student.
University employees have been urged to complete a new survey developed by the Office of Institutional Research. The Employee Engagement Survey is designed to collect data on an individual understanding of one’s role in the University, and how the role fits in the organization’s purpose and objectives. 

The Office of Institutional Research provides analytical services to University departments, to enable them transform data into usable and actionable information.

Even though participation is voluntary and entirely confidential, all employees have been requested to play their part in meeting university outcomes leading to operational and service excellence.
The Peer Educators and Counseling Club began offering a new telephone counseling service dubbed “Peer Support Call” on Thursday, March 1.

The service is aimed at assisting members of the university community who may be experiencing crises, are beset with questions to ask and /or who need to speak with a trained peer counselor while maintaining their anonymity.

The counselors can be reached from extensions 801 or 802 on campus, or through a direct line ( 0730116801/802), from Mondays to Saturdays, between 9am and 9 pm.