(SWIP) POLICY GUIDELINE

Introduction

Kenyatta University in collaboration with the industry stakeholders (employers) initiated a programme aimed at inculcating the necessary work experience amongst university students in an actual work environment. The Students Work Induction Programme (SWIP) is a solution towards bridging the skill gap between employers’ expectations/job market opportunities and the skill level of the undergraduate student. It ensures the acquisition of industry-based skills as the student undergoes academic training (alternating employment and study). 

 The SWIP programme develops relationships and builds bridges in a three way partnership amongst employers in diverse industries, the university and the students. The Directorate of University-Industry Partnerships (UIP) facilitates the SWIP placement process following the laid out criteria in this policy.

2.0 Eligibility and University Selection of a SWIP Intern

The selection criterion is based on the following guidelines:-

  • The SWIP intern must have scored a cumulative GPA of above 60.00 from at least 25 credit units (for School of Medicine the student should have completed pre-clinicals).
  • Employer’s preference and availability of the position(s).
  • Regional representation/balance is ensured.
  • At least 1/3 of each gender representation (affirmative action to be taken if need be).
  • Preferential consideration for students with special needs (SSN) in compliance with the national requirements.
  • Availability of the student:- the student must be out of session (on holiday) and willing to undertake the SWIP internship.
  • The student shall have no ongoing or pending disciplinary cases.
  • Distribution of positions between satellite campuses and main campus will be on a 60:40 ratio basis.
  • Soft skills such as confidence, team work, and etiquette and   leadership skills are an added advantage.

NB: Each of the eligibility/selection criteria set above shall count in equal measure.

3.0 Duration

The programme will enable students to alternate study and work where the work period will range between 3 to 4 months per academic year giving the students a minimum of one year work experience before graduating.

4.0 Employer’s Selection of Students

The employer will be given an opportunity to select the best among the qualifying and eligible students in the relevant fields.

 

4.1 Placement of Students
There are 2 broad preferences by the employers on the SWIP placement and the university allows all employers to choose the option that is most suitable to them.
• Option 1: Employers may opt to retain particular SWIP students during all SWIP sessions such that participants obtain work- related induction from that organization only.
• Option 2: Employers may opt to have different groups of SWIP students during different sessions hence allowing students to experience work-related induction at different organizations.

5.0 Induction into SWIP

The student enrollee into SWIP programme will go through induction training on a range of skills including but not limited to etiquette, leadership, communication, business intelligence, office operations skills, and interpersonal relations. This will be conducted by industry stakeholders and be guided by a SWIP training manual.

6.0 Student Responsibility

A student in the SWIP programme will be guided by the following responsibility statements.

  • The exact experience that the employer offers the student will depend largely on the impression s/he gives on arrival at the workplace. The student employee will work as per the rules and regulations of the employer company. S/he should be flexible in his/ her approach and be prepared to assist in tasks not mentioned in the employer’s training plan.
  • The student should prepare for the interview by researching the employer.
  •  The student should only attend an Interview when sincerely interested in a position with an employer.
  • Failure to attend an interview or contact an employer company/UIP for an interview without good reason or prior notification within 48 hours may mean withdrawal from the programme.
  • The student must keep a current address, telephone number and Email address on file with the UIP, whether at work or on campus.
  •  The student shall Provide UIP with an updated resume and cover letter.
  • The student shall confirm acceptance in writing, by completion of forms within 24 hours of the offer. Confirmation of job acceptances withdraws the student from the placement process. *Note: A verbal acceptance is considered a binding contract.
  • The student shall honour the acceptance of the offer as a contractual agreement with the employer. Contract dates must be completed as agreed upon. UIP should be supplied with a copy of the contract.
  • The student shall NOT continue to take interviews after he/she has accepted an offer and NOT accept more than one job offer.
  • Students are expected to fully adhere to both the SWIP and employer’s staff code of conduct. (The SWIP code of conduct is hereby given below in 7.0).
  • The student shall write and submit a report to the UIP Directorate at the end of the SWIP internship.

7. SWIP Code of Conduct

  1. Kenyatta University will provide its Industrial Partners with a list of its SWIP intern nominees who meet set and agreed parameters and guidelines as set in sec 2.0.
  2. Kenyatta University will communicate to the SWIP interns that they are required to exhibit and display the highest level of conduct during the entire duration of their internship programme at Industrial Partners.
  3. A SWIP intern shall not supervise employee(s) of Industrial Partners.
  4. The level of conduct required by the SWIP intern includes, but is not limited to the following:
  • The SWIP interns shall follow all applicable laws and regulations set out by Industrial Partners as applicable to any other employees.
  • The SWIP interns shall be privy to confidential information, material– electronic and otherwise or substance pertaining to Industrial Partners and shall keep such information confidential and guard against conflict of interest.
  • A SWIP intern shall not represent Industrial Partners in any forum whatsoever unless with the express authorization of managements of both the partners
  • The SWIP interns shall not come to work drunk, intoxicated or under the influence of alcohol and drugs. This will call for immediate disciplinary action from both the parties, including and up to discontinuation of the placement program for the concerned trainee.
  • A SWIP interns shall not use abusive or insulting language, or behave in a manner that is insulting to a person placed in authority over him/her by both parties.
  • The SWIP interns should not commit  any criminal offence (excluding an offence under road traffic legislation for which he/she is liable to be sentenced to any term of imprisonment whether immediate or suspended)
  • The SWIP interns should not deliberately neglect to perform any work which they are assigned to perform or   carelessly and improperly perform any work which from its nature ought to have been performed carefully and properly.
  • The SWIP interns shall maintain an appropriate and decent mode of dress and personal hygiene at all times.

8.0 Insurance Cover

The University will provide a SWIP Group Insurance Policy Cover. The insurance will comprehensively cater for the student’s medical cover while as a SWIP intern

9.0 Stipend

The students on SWIP programme will receive a modest stipend from the employer to meet their basic cost of living.

10.0 Assessment Method

The SWIP assessment method for interns will apply. However, the assessment must be undertaken by a qualified university officer as may be determined by university policy on supervision.

11.0 Benefits of SWIP

This three way partnership amongst employers in diverse industries, the university and the students accrues the following benefits:-

11.1 Benefits to Students

  • Mentoring and coaching
  • Change of Mindset:SWIP is designed to change the mindset of the student towards the work practice and culture, since placement is in globally competitive enterprises that subscribe to international best practices and professionalism.
  • Early Exposure:Students in SWIP are exposed to rich and practical work experience early during the university training.

 

11.2 Benefits to Employer

  • Cost effective source of human capital: SWIP offers an opportunity to hire directly from the university’s pool of highly qualified young students.  The students go through a stringent selection process as per the eligibility criteria (section 2.0), hence reduces the costs of recruitment at the company level.
  • Cutting edge soft-skills training:Upon enrollment, students selected for the SWIP programme are trained in cutting edge soft-skills as stipulated in the training manual. This has the benefit of ensuring that student employees are sensitive towards all aspects of human relations at the company level including fellow employees, clients and society at large.
  • Next generation of industry captains:The SWIP programme is aimed at producing the next crop of industry captains who possess a deep understanding of the functions of a company and how they may be improved to optimize the shareholders’ wealth.
  • Reduced time for on the job training:Companies spend much time and use a lot of money to undertake on-job training. SWIP addresses this problem by giving the opportunity to students to work as they study thus giving them the necessary skills, experience and exposure required in the work place. This will greatly shorten or eliminate the need for lengthy on-job training.
  • Technology transfer and innovation: SWIP provides a fertile ground for the interaction of academia and industry by giving the employer a chance to contribute towards the practical training and transferring up to date industry practice to students. Students are also given an opportunity to innovate around processes and products at the employer company hence bringing out the competitive edge.

 

11.3 Benefits to University

  • Quality and Relevance of University Curriculum:-The SWIP initiative gives the employer a chance to assess and give feedback to the university on the relevance of the curriculum thus ensuring that the university provides required skills.
  • Readily Prepared Workers: - The programme churns out ready to work graduates who will have gained relevant experience in the work place.
  • Marketability and Visibility of the University: The SWIP program will provide a fertile ground for the university to market and brand itself.

12.0 Role of UIP in Placement of SWIP interns

The Directorate of University Industry Partnerships (UIP) will ensure that:

  • There are available vacancies for students at any given time, putting emphasis on relevance of the course undertaken by the student(s) vis-à-vis the available vacancies.
  • Each work placement is developed to an acceptable standard and/or approved by the University as a suitable learning and training environment.
  •  The SWIP enrolee undertakes induction to the SWIP program (sec 5.0)
  • The progress on the job of SWIP interns is monitored. The student's performance on the job is supervised and evaluated by both the employer company and university supervisor.
  • Carry out annual SWIP sensitization campaign to both students (in main and satellite campuses) and partne rs.

 

 

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