Bandari Maritime Academy (BMA) has received a certificate of accreditation from Kenya National Qualifications Authority (KNQA) elevating the institution to international recognition.
The KNQA was set up in 2015 to help coordinate and harmonize education, training, assessment and quality assurance of all qualifications awarded in the country; with the view to improving quality and international comparability
BMA was granted autonomy from the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) in 2019. It recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Scotland-based City of Glasgow College to support the ongoing process of turning the academy into a Maritime Centre of Excellence to bridge industry’s workforce gaps.
The MOU established a strong link between the two institutions and will see BMA get help to write courses and develop teaching materials. Other joint initiatives will include seminars, workshops, collaborative research, and the certification of training programmes for students, faculties and industry.
“We are delighted to recognize this new partnership with Bandari Maritime Academy. Our Faculty of Nautical and STEM has strong business links across Africa, Asia and the Americas, specifically in providing academic qualifications and mandatory safety training for marine industry professionals,” the Principal and Chief Executive at City of Glasgow College, Paul Little said, adding that the institution was proud to work with Bandari to help deliver relevant, high-quality training to a new generation of seafarers.
Commenting on the MOU, the Ag. Chief Executive Officer of Bandari Maritime Academy Mr. Francis Muraya said the objectives of the MOU include a mutual exchange of maritime students, the development of a maritime internship, and collaboration in maritime and educational research projects in the longer term.
A maritime faculty exchange programme will also enable visiting lecturers to deliver in person or online courses to each institution, in line with applicable accreditation and legal requirements.
Mrs Nancy Karigithu, Principal Secretary of the State Department for Shipping and Maritime Affairs, reiterated the State commitment to promotion of Kenya’s maritime and shipping industry and to oversee human resource development, management, and research to support the sector.
“The Government of Kenya has identified the Blue Economy as one area with a high potential to generate massive employment for Kenyans, especially the youth. It is a priority for us that the youth be assisted to attain the skills and competencies necessary to enable them to benefit from the job opportunities available in the local and international maritime sector,” she said.
BMA has also signed another MOU with CMA CGM shipping line to facilitate support for the training and enhancement of skill and competencies in Kenya’s maritime sector. Through the agreement, opportunities will be developed to provide sea time opportunities to cadets and shore- based shipping and port operations skill development.
BMA has so far developed 12 curricula on employable skills for the maritime sector out of a target of 33 courses it plans to offer. Since the academy was granted autonomy from the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) in 2019, it has trained over 398 students in the modular courses and over 2000 participants in the short courses.
The government, through Legal Notice No. 233 of 28th November 2018, transformed Bandari College into Bandari Maritime Academy, a Regional Maritime Centre of Excellence for skills development for the Blue Economy- the next frontier for the economic development of our country.