Going Back in Time: Egerton University

In the spirit of 60 years of NL KE, we are going back in time to explore the history of our strong ties. Egerton Agriculture College, now Egerton University, was established in 1955. In 1967, the government of the Netherlands accepted a request for subsidy under the Netherlands’ “Joint-Financing of Projects to Non-commercial Private Organisations” scheme. Under the arrangement, the Netherlands agreed to co-fund projects together with the Kenyan government.

Beeld: ©Egerton University

This collaboration led to contributions from the Netherlands towards:

  1. a fully-equipped lecture hall (240 persons capacity) - named Holland Hall;
  2. a fully-equipped Animal Science complex- named Friesland Block;
  3. a 1,000-seat assembly hall, a landmark hall at Egerton University, named Kilimo Hall.

Collaboration continued…

Over the years, cooperation between Egerton University, organizations in the Netherlands, and organizations in other countries has been wide. In the 1990s, the Egerton Department of Zoology worked with the International Institute for Infrastructural, Hydraulic and Environmental Engineering (IHE) in Delft on water resources management. Together with the International Agricultural Centre in Wageningen, Egerton developed a rural extension training programme.

In 2009, Egerton University, the Universitat fur Bodenkultur Wien (BOKU) in Austria, UNESCO and IHE Delft, jointly launched an international Master’s degree programme in Limnology and Wetlands Management.

In 2021, Egerton’s Centre of Excellence for Livestock Innovation and Business hosted the Netherlands MDF Training and Consultancy Company and the University of Juba (South Sudan) during a research and workshop.

Beeld: ©Egerton University

From mid-1990s, Egerton University continued its partnership with Wageningen University, focusing on capacity building and research capacity. Prominent alumni of the joint programme between Egerton University and Wageningen University include:

  • Prof. Isaac Kosgey Sanga, presently the Vice Chancellor of Moi University
  • Prof. Bockline Omedo Bebe, who served as Deputy Vice Chancellor in-charge of research
  • Prof Alexander Kahi, who served as Deputy Vice Chancellor in-charge of academic affairs at Egerton University.

These three professors supervise doctoral students jointly with professors from Wageningen University. They teams also implemented joint research projects, for examples:

  • The 3R Kenya Project (Resilient, Robust, Reliable – From Aid to Trade), funded by the Embassy of the Netherlands in Kenya [LI1] .
  • Capacity building projects funded by the Netherlands Initiative for Capacity Development in Higher Education (NICHE) on designing labour market relevant curricula in dairy and horticulture. The project pioneered building capacity of the faculty of Agriculture in delivering a Competency Based Curriculum, which the Kenyan government is presently implementing in the country.
  • Egerton University is presently collaborating with Wageningen University in implementing an IKEA Foundation funded project 2023-2027 (REFOOTURE II) that is working on rethinking and redesigning the future of food towards an inclusive food system in Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda.

For more information about this sector or any other agricultural questions feel free to contact us via NAI-LNV@minbuza.nl. For the latest updates on activities, new articles and more follow us on X (Twitter) on @NLAgiKenya and subscribe to our newsletter by sending us an email. In case of any non-agriculture questions for the Embassy of the Netherlands in Nairobi see, this website for contact information.