Graduate Spotlight: Cecilia Kinuthia – Bachelor of Arts in Communication
Gearing up to an auspicious graduation ceremony, we profiled Cecilia Kinuthia, a Class of 2020 graduand who narrates her interesting #Strathmore20’Experiences to us.
If I’m being very honest, I wasn’t interested in doing this degree at first. I didn’t know it existed at Strathmore University. I wanted to pursue either Psychology or Journalism but when my parents heard of the communications degree, they encouraged me to apply. I did and spent the next four years discovering a genuine interest in the field of communication.
A wholesome experience
In my time, I didn’t get into the ‘key’ extra-curricular activities; sports have never been my thing and I never found a good fit in the clubs. But I did get involved in several things here and there. For a start, I was the class representative throughout my four years. This was a wholesome experience given the opportunities it gave me; I gave opening speeches when we had guest speakers. I talked to parents who were enrolling their children, and the prospective students who wanted to know what it was like to study at Strathmore. I worked part-time for almost two years and participated in a few community outreach programs. I cherished school events and attended most of them. I always treated this as a networking opportunity with my peers from the other courses at the University. I have made really great friendships here.
I was so close to wrapping up my course when COVID-19 hit. I had completed all my coursework, my research paper, and all but two of my exams. I did not get to experience the online classes, but I did do my last two papers in pyjamas while seated on the couch in my room.
Awkward or memorable moments? No awkward ones, but so many memorable ones. We were few in class, so we all got each other through the assignments, term papers, and chilly 8.00 a.m classes. This is where a lot of my good memories of the last four years come from.
Shaping a narrative
Being in the pioneer class has been a huge deal. It has all the great parts and the not so great parts for being the first group to do something new. I’ve looked at the communication students from the years behind mine, and it’s always great to see that they didn’t have to struggle with things we did. And that is the great thing, the administration listened. We were all figuring it out, it wasn’t always the smoothest ride, but it meant we had the chance to become friends with our lecturers and course administrators. There were never any closed doors. It does feel great to be the first one to hit this milestone for the University.
I am looking forward to graduation, but I must say, a virtual graduation takes a little of the shine out of the celebration. I am glad this is not the route my soon to be Alma mater is taking. It’s a huge deal, and nothing can take away from that. There’s just something about the frenzy, dressing up, having your grandparents at the ceremony (although virtual), and celebrating the achievement with the people who understand it as well as you do. You did it together!
I am still figuring out my ‘what next’ after graduation. For some reason, you can never be entirely prepared. No one tells you how suddenly everything is up to you, suddenly all your decisions are life decisions. Do I want to get a job, what kind of job? Do I want to further my studies, pursue a masters? Maybe… Unfortunately you have to figure out that other bit about adulthood on your own.
Strathmore does its best to prepare you for the job market though. They definitely equip you with the skills, help you write that amazing curriculum vitae, and even send you job listings through the Career Development Services. Yes, they can be extra like that.
My advice to prospective students: Do not put too much pressure on yourself to make the right decision. There is no such thing as a perfect decision. Allow yourself to make mistakes, and really choose what you want within the spaces that your life allows you. Take all the opportunities that come your way and create the opportunities that you want that don’t come your way naturally. And most of all, trust yourself! The grownups can advise you from experience, your friends can try and sway your choices, but when it comes down to it, you know yourself best, and you know what the right thing for you is more than anyone else could ever know, so just trust that.
This article was written by Francis Kabutu.
Would you like to share your experience of living through the circumstances brought by the Covid-19 pandemic? Kindly email: firstname.lastname@example.org