Basco Paints recently held its DuraCoat Awards of Academic Excellence at the University of Nairobi, School of Built Environment. A total of 42 students from various departments within the School of Built Environment were rewarded with a certificate plaque as well as cash prize.

Present during the awards was Basco Paints, Managing Director Mr. Kamlesh Shah, President, Architectural Association of Kenya (AAK) Arch. Mugure Njendu, Chief Guest, Principal College of Architecture and Building Science, Professor Peter Ngau, various Heads of Departments in the School of Built Environment among others.

“At Basco Paints, giving back to the community has been an integral part of our values and operation system hence why we have religiously sponsored the DuraCoat Awards of Academic Excellence, having begun operations 43 years ago as a small workshop”, said Mr. Kamlesh Shah. He also encouraged the graduates to be committed to remain in pursuit of fulfilling their dreams while urging them to mentor upcoming individuals in the architectural and building sector. He said they should be cognizant of the fact that youngsters in the University could be treating these winners as Role Models, and they should be conducting their future choices of opportunities accordingly with mindfulness.

Basco Paints has continued to sponsor the Awards since the year 2006, with the aim of developing a marketable academic program that allows professionals from the public sector and private sector to link students with jobs in their respective backgrounds. The partnership has additionally enriched students’ skills, in turn enabling them to become highly sought by future employers.

The construction sector in Kenya is expected to witness steady growth with demand for infrastructure increasing owing to urbanization and funding from the World Bank. Kenya, therefore remains resourceful in its ability to produce a workforce of highly skilled personnel in the construction sector with increased programs such as the DuraCoat Academic Awards of Excellence despite the increased importation of skilled construction workers from abroad.

The real estate sector in Kenya contributes 13. 8 percent towards Kenya’s gross domestic product, according to the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics. The survey is indicative of a growth in the construction sector in recent years due to urbanization, with the main classes of work including road, water, building, electrical and mechanical. According to the survey, the construction industry in Kenya has a workforce of 511, 676 with semi-skilled workers comprising 169, 620 and skilled workers comprising 127, 264.