After studying for two years to earn a business management degree from Kampala International University through its constituent college Dreamline College, Paul Otieno came to class two weeks ago to find the doors closed.
Auctioneers were hovering around and the college principal was nowhere to be seen. Two years of tuition fees and hours in the lecture halls seem to have gone down the drain.
Now, instead of attending class and finishing his degree programme, Otieno and his classmates protest every day, sitting outside the college.
It is a story being replayed across many colleges in Kenya. The education industry is poorly regulated, many colleges are unaccredited and fake colleges have sprung up as demand for higher education accelerates, driven by rising ambitions and a bulging youth population.
“We were not given any notice. We came for classes as usual and we found auctioneers demanding a Sh4 million rent debt. This college is accredited by the Commission of Higher Education, so where does this leave us?” he asks.
Contacted, the university’s country director Christopher Leting said there was nothing wrong with the college, and he wasn’t aware there were auctioneers who had closed down the college.
“Dreamline College has no problem at all. Everything is on course and we are even enrolling students for September intake,” he said.
True to his word, the college placed an advert the same week, inviting applications for degree programmes.
Education established normalcy has since returned but some students intimated they were living in fear “anything can happen next”.
“I, personally, plan to approach the administration to see whether I can get credit transfer then move to another college,” said one student on condition of anonymity.
In spite of many fake college scandals, thousands of Kenyans continue to lose hard-earned cash to unscrupulous individuals pretending to offer academic programmes.