UoN Alumni Newsletter (October, 2011)
University of Nairobi Alumni Association, (UONAA)
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Welcome to the sixth edition of the University of Nairobi Alumni Association (UONAA) Newsletter. First, the editorial team takes this opportunity to send message of condolence to the family, friends and colleagues of the departed Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Prof Wangari Maathai. Prof. Maathai, an alumnus of the University of Nairobi and the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize winner, sadly lost her brave battle against cancer at the age of 71 in late September this year. She was the founder of the Green Belt Movement, an NGO with the mission “to mobilize community consciousness – using tree planting as an entry point – for self-determination, equity, improved livelihoods and security, and environmental conservation”. The Alumni Association is proud of our alma mater who recognized Prof Maathai when she was still alive. In recognition of her exemplary service, the University of Nairobi conferred Prof Maathai the Honorary Doctor of Science (D.SC) at a colorful ceremony held on 11th March 2005. The University later launched the Wangari Maathai Institute for Peace and Environment with Prof Maathai as the Distinguished Chair. She has been spearheading the growth of the Institute through fund-raising and other initiatives. The theme of this issue is “Dare to Dream” as the UONAA embarks on an ambitious project to construct an Alumni Centre which will forever change the way the Alumni interact with their alma mater. Today, it is a dream, but with the support of Alumni, the University and well wishers, the dream shall be realized... just as Prof Maathai did. She dared to dream and changed the way we view the environment forever. Let’s endeavor to change the world the way she envisaged. Only then will her spirit live forever in the UONAA. In this issue we also cover the inspirational career journeys of two alumni; our Chairperson, Dr. Betty Gikonyo who is indeed an inspiration to the young and old alumni wishing to venture into the tricky and challenging business world; and Prof Rhoda Wanja Thairu, an accomplished academic and researcher. Their journey demonstrates that with determination, success is guaranteed. We would also like to congratulate the two new Deputy Vice- Chancellors, Prof Lucy W. Irungu who will be heading Research, Production and Extension (RPE) and Prof Isaac Mbeche, Students Affairs (SA). The duo have offered exemplary service to the university community and their skills will no doubt boost service delivery at the institution. Finally, we wish to thank the University of Nairobi Management for donating a 1.5-acre piece of land at Arboretum Drive to put up the Alumni Centre. This is a clear demonstration of the University’s commitment to see the UONAA stand on its feet. It is the intention of the UONAA to make this magazine widely interactive. We look forward to members contributing articles on their experiences in various fields. This will indeed help in mentoring our young members. As you read this edition keep in mind that you own the publication and your contribution will help make a difference. We hope you will find the articles exciting and captivating.
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