First Article Published Under Scholarly Mentoring Program
The University of Technology Sydney and Brown University are pleased to announce the first article published under their innovative Author+Editor mentoring program, that provides editorial mentoring support to researchers from developing countries in preparing an academic article through to publication in Gateways: International Journal of Community Research and Engagement.
Dr Alfred Kitawi from the Centre for Research in Education at Strathmore University, Nairobi, participated in the Author+Editor program during 2018 and his scholarly article ‘Improving transition rates of students in informal settlements into higher education: An analysis of the Macheo Mentoring Programme’ has now been published in the open volume, Gateways Volume 12, 1.
The fourth goal of the Sustainable Development Goals is to achieve inclusive and quality education for all. Kenya, along with many other African countries, has seen a positive upsurge in student numbers in recent years. However, the persistence of profound and complex challenges means that both access and quality remain elusive for many – in particular, those students living in informal settlements throughout the country.
Dr Kitawi’s research presents a viable way to encourage those students to transit from high schools to tertiary institutions by focusing on the case of the Macheo Mentoring Programme of Strathmore University – which aims to improve transition rates into tertiary education for young people from the informal settlement of Macheo - and how it contributes to the academic success of final year students.
Currently the Macheo Mentoring Programme mentors 150 students, and over 50 program graduates have been accepted into universities and colleges. Analysis conducted for this article shows that, in 2017, the percentage of students from the Macheo program entering university was greater than that of the rest of Kenya.
The article demonstrates the transformative potential of a structured, sustained university-community mentoring program. Factors contributing to its success include involving teachers, parents and school principals in the program’s development and assessment. In this way, Macheo complements, as opposed to supplements, the teaching and learning programs of the schools in the informal settlements.
Through providing insights from the Global South into how universities can structure their own high-school mentoring programs, the processes that need to be in place and possible challenges they may experience, Dr Kitawi’s work makes an important contribution to the literature on the university’s role in widening participation.
Read the article here.
The pilot of the Author+Editor mentoring program was made possible by a generous donation to UTS Shopfront Community Program by Dr Penny O’Donnell. Dr Alfred Kitawi was supported by Gateways’ Margaret Malone, Managing Editor, and Professor Paul Ashton, Editorial Committee, during the publication process.
Gateways: International Journal of Community Research and Engagement is a peer-reviewed, open access academic journal published by UTS ePRESS in a partnership between the Centre for Social Justice and Inclusion at the University of Technology and The Swearer Center at Brown University, Rhode Island.