By Diana Wambui
Thumbnail Photo Courtesy of Moses Wafula.
Professor Laban Ayiro, the Vice-Chancellor of Daystar University delivered the first Inaugural lecture at Daystar University in Nairobi Campus on the afternoon of July 23. The title of the lecture was, ‘Mixed Methods Research: Myth or Reality?’
An inaugural lecture is a talk given by a full professor at a University; detailing his or her previous contribution to knowledge. The day began pompously with police band processions and distinguished guests seated at the auditorium.
Prof. Ayiro is a full professor of Research Methods who holds enormous academic qualifications including; Ph.D. in Business Management from Kenyatta University; a Masters of Science and Entrepreneurship Studies from Kenyatta University, a second Masters of Arts in International Relations in United States International University, a third Master’s in Education Finance, Economics and Planning from the University of Witwatersrand, South Africa. Lest forget, his first Bachelor’s Degree in Education for teaching Chemistry and Mathematics from McGill University, Canada.
With over 40 years of teaching experience, he has virtually mentored over 1000 students from Universities across Africa, Asia, and Europe.
He gave a top-notch, innovative summary of his research findings and a deeply reflective, insightful contribution to knowledge in new and profound ways. At the onset of the lecture, Prof. Ayiro was given a standing ovation. His family members were present consisting of Lawyers, Teachers, and Doctors.
The VC highlighted the challenges of scholarly research in most African Universities that are; limited linkage between research and National Development (Public Policies), inadequate libraries, low demand for research and victimization of predatory journals (journals take long to be published).
He also acknowledged the advantages of being a part of the Daystar fraternity including a global access to the library. “The more I stay in Daystar, the more I feel that I have truly found the resting place where God wanted me to be,’’ he said in March 2019, when he was sworn in as the new Vice-Chancellor after serving two years in Moi University as Acting Vice-Chancellor.
In addition, he recognized efforts from countries like Senegal and Ethiopia in research and development.
Inaugural lectures first began in 1966 at Makerere University in Eastern Africa. The talks also provide a way forward concerning pressing academic, intellectual, scholarly, and societal dilemmas of the time.