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I showed up at 11am only to learn the exam started at 9am


Finally, I can breathe. Today was the last day for this semester’s exams. It has been an uphill battle but I put my best foot forward. I must confess though that the accounting exam gave me a beating but not in a way I could not handle. This brought me back to the day KCSE results were released – I attained a C. I was not sure how my life would unfold since Covid had changed the normal we all knew. “Not to worry, we just need to find a way to get you started,” my parents would say. That was over two years ago. My name is Branson Liimo, I have a Diploma in Business Creation and Entrepreneurship from the Strathmore Institute of Management and Technology. I’m currently at Strathmore University pursuing a Bachelor of Commerce degree. I may not know how it feels to ACE some or all exams yet, but I know how it feels to look at my results and appreciate the hard work I continually posit to ensure my personal studying, assignments, CATs and group work count.

Any memorable moments from your diploma journey?

Yes, I have a few but one that stands out for me was during the exam week when I showed up at 11a.m. ready for an exam only to find out that it had began at 9a.m. I have never felt so confused – who forgets when their exam is?  All my mastered revision disappeared like smoke on a windy day.  Honestly, I still do not know how I forgot but I remember my dad was determined to see me do the exam. He reached out to the institute and my lecturer and thereafter, I got to sit for a different exam. I passed. Phew! That is one experience I would not wish on anyone.

How has your transition been?

Apart from not feeling like a freshman and having some lads, I happen to know most of the spaces at the University since the facilities are shared.  I also appreciate that I got to retain my mentor – Mr. Abraham Mwose.  Like a hawk eyeing its prey, I bump into him at the cafeteria or at the gate by Keri road. I must admit there are moments I wish I could make a 180 degree turn only to have our eyes meet from a distance. Then his “hello” and “how have you been” settle me down.  Of the many people I walk by on campus – he never passes by without stopping to say hello. His presence on campus is no doubt a benefit to those of us that call him confidant. Now that I have finished my exams, I plan on meeting him next week for a chat.

Who are you away from the campus bustle?

I may be in college but my little Spiderman ‐‐ Jaden, my 7-year-old brother and our last born -‐ has a way of making me feel old while making me dance to his tunes. Our time together includes but is not limited to watching cartoons, drawing, colouring, counting, you name it. His favourite show is ‘Teen Titan Go’. All his school projects become our shared assignments. His way of learning is so different from what I did while in class one. He insists I say “grade one”. You may wonder how doing homework with my little brother has changed me – while he has taught me to do my assignments with a smile, he has also taught me to acknowledge when I do not know and to seek help. He has a way of lighting my afternoon after a beating of a quiz or CAT that went south. I am relearning to enjoy the small things in life – like the excitement he shows when he gets an assignment to bring home and cannot wait to show me.

Being able to have a campus experience is a privilege. I get to be in a space that invites people from diverse cultures and religions, with an effort to mold them to be better human beings. Pressures are all around and the cause to doubt your worth is real but I keep reminding myself that there can never be another me and I am of value. I cannot promise that I will win every battle that comes my way here at campus or away but I am continually working to become a better son, better brother, but above all a better me because only I can make myself to be at my ultimate best.


This article was written by Annete Karanja.


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