NAIROBI – The Russian Embassy in Nairobi has awarded scholarships to 60 Kenyan students in a bid to strengthen public diplomacy and ties with Kenya.
Speaking during a pre-departure briefing for the beneficiaries at the Heron Hotel in Nairobi, Russia Ambassador to Kenya Dmitry Maksimychev said the best way to establish good bilateral relations is direct people-to-people relations.
“This is an excellent opportunity for this,” Ambassador Maksimychev said.
“The students will be exposed to the Russian culture and have a chance to expose their Russian friends to the Kenyan and African culture as well,” he added.
The envoy encouraged the students that once they graduate from the different universities across Russia, they should return and make a contribution to Kenya’s development.
The students have been admitted to different courses in certificate, undergraduate, diploma and master’s degree and will study Russian as requirement in the first year.
Ambassador Maksimychev said that in an attempt to promote education ties with Kenya, Russian government scholarships have tripled in the last five years, and they are working to further increase the number.
“In 2018 we began from less than 20 places for students from Kenya in Russian higher education institutions. I want to assure all guests present that this job will be continued,” the envoy said, adding that the embassy will open the Russian Centre for Open Education in Nairobi starting in September.
The centre will teach Russian language to more than 300 Kenyans at no cost..
“We will be admitting 300 people to learn Russian language courses, which will facilitate the induction of Kenyan students, if they decided to join the universities or to apply for scholarships. It would be easier for them, and those courses are free,” Maksimychev said.