Dr. Chao Mbogo
Kenya has earned its title as Africa’s technological hub many times over. But despite the abundance of innovation and startups in the tech space, women are still few and far between...especially when it comes to academia. That’s why Dr. Chao Mbogo’s position as the head of the computer science department at Kenya Methodist University is seen as more than just an academic appointment. To many, she is #goals—a role model that women can see and strive to emulate. And with a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Cape Town, she does just that. “The number of girls in most of the Computer Science classes that I teach is almost always much less than boys,” she tells OkayAfrica. “I am working towards inspiring more girls into Computer Science.”
Her work with KamiLimu, a mentorship program she founded to augment classroom learning for Computer Science students at Kenyan universities, is a step towards building that inspiration. These are skills that Dr. Mbogo wishes she had when she first left for Oxford University to pursue her MSc in Computer Science. And so, KamiLimu directly speaks to Mbogo’s passion to prepare students beyond what they learn in the classroom.
“The lowered quality of education due to mismanagement of resources, limited access to resources, and bad leadership [is a problem I’d like to see solved],” she says. “... Often, it is not for lack of skills or intellect that most youth do not thrive, but for lack of information, access to that information, and mentorship.”