With the adoption of Computer Aided Design (CAD) technologies by professionals in the fields of architecture, engineering design and other design-based careers, learning CAD skills has become extremely crucial compared to manual drafting, drawing and design procedures. Indeed it is becoming impossible to do without CAD for those in the design sector if one has to be at the competitive edge. A number of higher institutions of learning have acknowledged this fact and now use CAD software in their training so that their students can fit in the competitive labour market upon completion of their studies.
Nevertheless, in Kenya, as in many developing countries, a large proportion of secondary school students opting for design-based courses at higher institutions of learning are not aware of the existence of CAD programs. This is because unlike in developed world, the Kenyan education system is yet to incorporate CAD training at secondary school level. Yet higher institutions of learning expect these students to have basic CAD skills at entry level.
This has posed a huge challenge to universities as they try to integrate these students with those who already have some exposure to CAD.
Still, introducing CAD to students who have no previous knowledge of the general CAD technologies is quite a daunting task. This is mainly because of the apparent ‘complex’ concepts associated with these technologies.
It is therefore imperative that programmes be put in place that will enable students interested in design-based careers to acquire basic CAD skills before completion of their secondary school education. This is where the CiSA programme comes into the scene.
CiSA is set to change the scenario by being part and parcel of the proposed education reforms by the government. These reforms are hinged on the need to recognize the important role played by modern technologies (including ICTs) in the overall development of a child, and the need to re-align the education sector to the ideals of the new constitution and Kenya Vision 2030 – the country’s new development blueprint.
Appropriate and relevant education and training is the vehicle that will drive Kenya into becoming a middle income country.