A Structured Mentorship Model for Computer Science University Students in Kenya
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The Kenyan university education system has been criticized for graduating students who are underprepared to meet the skills demand of the modern workplace, and who cannot formulate effective solutions to our most pressing socio-economic problems. To address the skills gap for Computer Science (CS) students, a structured 6-month mentorship program was designed to offer skills in personal and professional development, innovation, scholarship application, and community engagement. This paper presents the results of a mixed-method study comprising of 95 CS students from 12 Kenyan universities who have participated in the mentorship program since September 2016. The study examines if structured mentorship leads to successful upskilling for CS students. The findings indicate that at least 81% of the students in the mentorship program improve in skills such as innovation and professional preparedness. Results from this study demonstrate how CS education can be complemented with a structured mentorship model towards global competitiveness.