Technical and vocational colleges in East Africa record fourfold increase in student enrolment

Technical and vocational colleges in East Africa record fourfold increase in student enrolment

Mombasa, Kenya, 1st February 2022 –Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges in East Africa supported by the World Bank-funded East African Skills for Transformation Project (EASTRIP) have recorded more than fourfold increase in student enrolment, according to the mid-term evaluation report of the project.

The report undertaken to review the project performance at its mid-term, revealed that the total student enrolment in 16 Regional Flagship TVET Institutes (RFTIs) increased from 6,971 students at baseline to 30,776 students at mid-term, higher than the overall project target to enrol 20,000 students annually in both long-term and short-term training programmes.

EASTRIP is a five-year project funded by the World Bank and the Governments of Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania to increase access and improve quality of TVET programs offered by the selected Regional Flagship TVET Institutes and support regional integration.

The project seeks to increase enrolment of female students in technology and engineering fields which has been low. The total number of female students enrolled in selected TVET courses has also increased from 741 students at baseline to 5,230 students. Graduates employed within six months upon graduation has also increased from 47 per cent to 69 per cent.

Participants at the EASTRIP Technical Advisory Meeting.

Speaking at the opening session of the Technical Advisory Meeting to reviews results of the mid-term review, the IUCEA Executive Secretary, Prof. Gaspard Banyankimbona, said “we are advocating for our member universities to move from academic-based learning that has characterised university education for decades to 21st century competency-based learning that puts emphasis on skills development for the world of work.  We believe TVET institutions have a key role to play in giving us the necessary learning experiences in training graduates with required skills to meet the demands of the fast-changing employment landscape.”

Prof. Banyankimbona added that: “We have developed a new strategic plan (2021 to 2026) and put emphasis on supporting TVET systems in the implementation of the EAC Common Higher Education Area. This means that harmonisation of TVET qualifications, regional mobility of students and staff in TVET institutions will become key goals of not just the EASTRIP Project Implementation Team but also the whole of IUCEA including its governance structures.”

The World Bank Lead Education Specialist, Dr. Xiaoyan Liang, said: “Over the last 3 years, significant progress has been made in expanding enrolment and developing demand-driven programmes in most TVET institutes. The underlying principles of industry linkage and institutional autonomy are two important pillars that EASTRIP uses to improve the relevance and quality of TVET and these are being well recognized” .

The TVET Director, Ministry of Education in Kenya, Mr Tom Mulati, who represented the Principal Secretary, State Department of Vocational and Technical Training (VTT), said: “The development of harmonized regional TVET Qualifications Framework & Occupational standards is a subject we have engaged in and shall continue to engage in the future. Harmonized qualifications Framework is the direction that the world is taking. As a region we cannot afford to be left out.”

The EASTRIP Projects supports 16 technical and vocational institutes from Ethiopia, Kenya and Tanzania to become regional flagship institutes in key growth sectors of the economy including manufacturing, transport and infrastructure, energy, and Information and Communication Technology (ICT).

EASTRIP Regional Flagship TVET Institutes

Sector Focus Regional Flagship TVET Institute Country


Railway Dire Dawa  Polytechnic College Ethiopia
Railway Ethiopia Railway Academy Ethiopia
Marine Kenya Coast National Polytechnic Kenya
Air National Institute of Transport Tanzania
Road Kombolcha TVET Polytechnic College Ethiopia
Building Infrastructure Meru National Polytechnic Kenya
Highway Infrastructure Kenya Institute of Highway and Building Technology Kenya Kenya
Power/Energy Power/energy General Wingate Polytechnic College Ethiopia
Geothermal KenGen Geothermal Training Centre Kenya
Hydro Arusha Technical College Tanzania
Manufacturing Tool making/leather Federal TVET Institute Ethiopia
Textile/garment Hawassa TVET Polytechnic College Ethiopia
Textile Kisumu National Polytechnic Kenya
Leather Dar es Salaam Institute of Technology (DIT) Mwanza Campus Tanzania
Agro-processing Holeta TVET Polytechnic College Ethiopia Ethiopia
ICT ICT Dar es Salaam Institute of Technology (DIT) Dar es Salaam Campus Tanzania


Notes to Editors

  • The Inter-University Council for East Africa (IUCEA) is a strategic institution of the East African Community (EAC) responsible for the development and coordination of higher education and research in the region.
  • IUCEA is the Regional Facilitation Unit for the World Bank-funded East Africa Skills for Transformation and Regional Integration Project (EASTRIP).
  • EASTRIP is funded by the governments of Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania and the World Bank to increase access and improve the quality of TVET programs in 16 regional flagship TVET Centres of Excellence and to support regional integration.
  • The project supports the development of highly specialized TVET programs at diploma and degree levels for training of technicians and TVET faculty, as well as industry recognized short-term training, targeting regional priority sectors in transport, energy, manufacturing, and ICT.


For further information, please contact

Godwin Bonge Muhwezi,

Project Communication Officer,

Inter University Council for East Africa

Kampala, Uganda


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