What do you want to be when you grow up?


A question you have likely been asked many times. For a younger you, it changed as easily as the weather. On Monday it could be a vet, by Thursday a DJ. Now that you’re older, maybe you’re feeling the pressure to have it figured out. High school is over, and the decision of what next has come knocking. So, what do you want to be when you grow up?

First things first, it’s okay to not know yet. Really, it’s fine. This is the time to reflect on your skills, talents and natural affinities. What are you really good at, what skills do you get complimented on the most? Are you happiest when solving an equation, taking apart a computer, debating a hot topic or creating an art piece? Think on it. It’s a good place to start.

Once you feel you have an idea, start to look for the best place to learn and grow your skills. Google, check out different universities. Call them up and get more information. And when there is an open day, grab your parents and head there. On Saturday 28th, we held the annual open day here in Nairobi, with additional out of town open days in Machakos and Mombasa. Fresh KCSE graduates flocked to campus with their parents.

Through the course of the day, prospective students got to hear from alumni of the different schools. Who better to tell you about a university than those who have studied and graduated from it? The alumni, who varied from a tax lead for the East Africa region, to a sous chef at an internationally renowned hotel, and a graduate assistant right here in SU, shared their unique viewpoints on everything about the Stratizen experience. They emphasized greatly the influence that the University had on their leadership journeys and passion for community service. The parents gathered were taking serious notes!

Beyond the first-hand experience of being a Stratizens, the parents and potential future alumni had an in-depth panel session with the deans of each school. This session served to provide all the information about the different courses available, the intakes and entry requirements and the benefits of pursuing the various degree programs.

But the real question of the day was ‘Why Strathmore’? Of all the universities, public and private, across the country and region, what makes Strathmore the first choice for a young high school graduate and their parents? Prof. Izael Da Silva summed it up perfectly by saying, “we are in the business of creating good people and great leaders”. This is an active endeavour that is embedded into the academic and non-academic student activities including;

  •  Core humanities units undertaken by every student regardless of their specialization
  • An enabling environment of cleanliness and promotion of human dignity
  • Service above self – rewiring toward the common good
  • Talent nurturing in the classroom and beyond.

He emphasized that the collaboration between the student, lecturer, parent and environment is the key to the success of our students.

Outdoors, on the bright and sunny graduation square, schools and clubs set up booths to meet and greet parents and potential students. Not only did they give information about the courses, they also offered career counselling to help the student figure out the courses that would suit them best.

Coming into the open day, you could practically see the thought bubble floating above the students’ heads, each wondering if today was the day they would finally resolve the dilemma of the next step. Well, for most it was a stepping stone towards clarity. The first next step on the path to a ‘grown up future’. An initial answer to the age old question of ‘what do I want to be when I grow up’? A question that perhaps is never fully answered because really, does anyone ever really reach the grown up promised land?


This article was written by Celia Kinuthia. 

What’s your story? We’d like to hear it. Contact us via communications@strathmore.edu


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