Postgraduate enrolment jumps 20% as firms resume hiring

Enrolment for postgraduate courses in public universities in Kenya rebounded and grew the highest in three years as firms resumed hiring and restored full salaries, opening opportunities for masters and PhD graduates, writes John Mutua for Business Daily. The latest data from the Ministry of Education show that the number of students enrolling for PhDs and masters jumped 20.5% to 34,403 in the year that ended June, the highest since 2019.

The rise coincided with Kenya’s economy adding jobs and increasing pay marginally following recovery from COVID-19 economic hardships, which triggered layoffs, salary cuts and business closures. The hardships saw postgraduate enrolment drop to its lowest level in eight years, from 44,657 in 2019 and 67,407 in 2017 to 28,539 in 2020, further hurting the finances of cash-strapped public universities even as the Treasury cuts funding to Kenya’s universities.

PhD and masters degrees are considered a ticket to promotions and the resumption of hiring has reignited the pursuit of postgraduate qualifications. Average earnings for workers in the private sector grew at the slowest pace in 11 years, as firms resumed hiring and kept a lid on wage costs in a recovering economy.
Full report on the Business Daily site