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Alumni Spotlight; Jackline Akinyi – Beating all Odds despite Financial Challenges

“We can neither measure the impact of our kindness nor tell what a blessing they are to others until narrated by those who receive them. Giving is life touching and life changing. Our kindness, though small they may seem to us, leave permanent smiles on the faces of those who receive them. The impact of the Strathmore spirit of financially supporting needy students cannot be better expressed than by the words of an appreciation,” expressed by Jackeline.


Jackline Akinyi Odhiambo recently graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce and Management (BCOM) – Finance major Business Administration minor- with a 2nd class upper honors despite the numerous challenges she faced while at school. An active member of the Community Service Centre (CSC) and the secretary of the Human Resource club, Jackline is extremely grateful to Strathmore for the support given her through her academic years that have seen her graduate.

Jackline’s Family background

I come from Siaya and I am the last born of five siblings. Both of my parents reside in Siaya.


For my primary and secondary education I studied both in Siaya. I attended Bishop Okoth Secondary School and managed to attain a mean grade of B- in my K.C.S.E national examinations.

Strathmore University Tenure

I learnt about Strathmore University through my brother. He came across an advertisement in a newspaper  back in 2011, about Strathmore University looking to offer 35% and above financial aid to students from humble backgrounds, who attained a mean grade of  B- and above in their K.C.S.E examination. With the finance instability at home I was not going to let such an opportunity pass me by.


Although I was late in applying, I was privileged to receive the scholarship and I started school immediately. Since I was awarded 35% scholarship, my brother offered to pay the remaining 65% because he was working and was able to afford. I rely on my brother financially since my parents are quite old and the rest of my siblings do not have a stable jobs. In 2012 unfortunately my brother lost his job and things became tough because my remaining three years was now not secure.


I can say with certainty 2nd was my most challenging year; I almost chose to change careers from pursuing a BCOM to CPA since it would be cheaper. But I was fortunate to have a very supportive mentor who paid almost ¾ of my 2nd year fee 1st semester. The remaining quarter was paid by the advancement office; this was very humbling considering I could not do my end of semester exams. Luckily I was allowed to take special exams for that semester.


For my 2nd semester of the same year, Elimisha Stratizen – a student’s initiative used for contributing money to pay for the less fortunate students, paid Kshs. 44,000 and I paid the remaining Kshs. 20,000. As my fees was being paid, I realized God had sent great support my way for each step.  Fortunately, in 3rd year my brother got a new job although his salary would not allow him to pay for all my fees at once. As a result, I was always rushing at the last minute to get my exam card which students get only when their school fees have been paid. My fourth year school fees was paid by the Alumni office through the help of my mentor Christina Garashie.

Gratitude to Strathmore

As much as my tenure at Strathmore was tough, I know it could have been worse if it was not for the support and understanding of the school. It was because of their great help I was able to attain my undergraduate degree. The effort was not in vain and I hope the university will continue to show the same kindness and support to needy students in the university.

What drives you to want to read and excel?

The outstanding support from my mentor Mrs. Mukami Njoroge, was a key motivator. That support gave me the strength to withstand all the challenges I experienced. Mrs. Njoroge introduced me to Dr. Virginia Gichuru who mentored me spiritually.


We wish Jackline all the best in her future endeavors.