Varsity sets up music institute

Masinde Muliro University Science and Technology (MMUST) Vice chancellor Prof Fred Otieno (sitting) playing a drum set during signing of Memorandum of Understanding between Global Youth Grove (GYG) and MMUST where the university received music instruments worth Sh3.5 million- Photo/Ong’ang’a Ochuodho/County Guardian News


By CGN Reporter

Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST) and Global Youth Groove Organization (GYG), US based music school to start a music institute at the university.

Already Global Youth Groove has donated music instruments to the university at a cost of sh3.5million.

In the five year partnership deal, renowned music tutors and musicians from the Berklee College of Music based in Boston, USA will be offering exchange teaching programs with the Institute of Music at MMUST.

Speaking during the signing of the partnership deal, Dr Bob Mbori, Dean of the School of Arts and Social Sciences, said more instruments are expected to be shipped to the institution by GYG in the course of this year at a cost of sh10million.

Dr Mbori said the program will see students and the local community undertake short courses, certificate and diploma courses in music production and music technology.

“We are setting up a modern studio with Industry standard Music Recording and Production equipment and Software. Learning music promotes craftsmanship and students will learn how to produce quality music in other state of art studios which in the long run can be a source of their livelihood,” he said.

Mr Mbori said Music is the fabric of the society that shapes the character of the students and the youths at large, adding, most of their leisure time they will spend in the music studios thus not engaging in drugs and substance abuse.

Currently there are 6 students undertaking a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and Music, 10 students undertaking diploma courses in music and 3 students doing a certificate course in music production.

Mbori said they have already submitted the coursework to the Commission of University Education (CUE) for approval in readiness to starting a fully-fledged School of Music and Performing Arts at the institution.

Dr Catherine Aurah, the Directorate of International Relations and Academic Linkages (DIAL ) said music education contributes greatly to children’s intellectual development, saying that young children will also be given the opportunity to learn music at a tender age.

“Children can develop their math and pattern-recognition skills with the help of musical instruments. Playing music offers repetition in a fun format which sharpens their brains,” said Ms Aurah.

According to Ms Aurah, music helps in emotional development which in the long run will see the students develop higher self-esteem and more so have the ability to deal with anxiety.

Global Youth Groove (GYG) President Mr Sammy Lutomia said the two institutions be sharing resources accrued from music proceeds and more so develop tailor made music curriculum to be used to train professional musicians.

Mr Lutomia said they will also promote exchange programs for students and staff between the two institutions.

“We are building up a modern music industry in the country through this collaboration so that musicians in Kenya can get value of their sweat by making use of their talents for economic gains as opposed to just entertaining people,” said Lutomia.

MMUST Vice Chancellor Prof Fredrick Otieno welcomed the initiative and promised to fully support the development of the music institute at the university.

Prof Otieno said the university the collaboration will go along away in ensuring that the university produces professional and qualified musicians all over world for a competitive market.