Student Spotlight; Tracy Mbeneka AIESEC Kenya National Director
Tracy Mbeneka, a 3rd year Bachelor of Business Science (BBS) – Finance option student, rejoices at the opportunities that have stemmed from her serving at AIESEC Kenya.
The delightful lady who studies under the Strathmore Institute of Mathematical Sciences, has enjoyed great privileges such as dining with global leaders, presenting research work in global forums, and organizing important Strathmore events that have attracted great key personalities.
Tracy wishes to use all her experiences to grow her career path, and is hopeful that many doors will be opened by the time she completes her studies.
How has your journey at AIESEC been?
I joined AISEC in my first year at Strathmore in August 2014, as member of the business development team. In the same year I was appointed as the Vice President of Talent Management, which is basically like Human Resource Management. It was an incredible year of experience.
This experience enabled me to get an internship at Unilever in the HR department, despite my academic background.
I currently work as the National Director at AIESEC Kenya, in charge of Partnerships and Incoming International Internships.
What exposure have these roles given you?
In my role as the National Director I handle 22 universities and one specific portfolio sales. I recruit interns for major corporates that we work with such as Barclays and Vivo energy. I have gained experience in cross-cultural management, cross-cultural communication and corporate communication.
As part of the national team, we are the strategic team in the country for AIESEC. We have to partake in international planning since AIESEC needs a direction for the whole year. One of my joys came about when I was planning for the year, and an opportunity arose for me to attend a conference in Poland. A representation of 128 countries and territories participated in the conference which I gladly went in October.
How was conference?
It was really incredible as I interacted with different nationalities; it felt like I was sitting with the world. At any meal or session time I would sit with a person from Brazil, Australia, Jamaica and many other countries, it was really amazing to see that there are so many like-minded people in this world.
During the conference we were divided into regions: Europe and America, Asia Pacific, and The Middle East and Africa. We were required to create a project that directly impacts our communities, The Middle East and Africa group came up with a project that I got the privilege to pitch to international companies that were interested in investing 10,000 Euros; Electrolux and DHL.
Unfortunately we did not win but I got the platform to represent a whole region and it was such an honour and quite humbling.
Other than AIESEC what other co-curricular activities are you involved in at Strathmore?
Around last year I was involved in planning an entrepreneurial event called The Hook up Dinner, which attracted personalities like Aly Khan Satchu. I was also involved in organizing the Ted-eX Strathmore conference. I generally love co-curriculum activities because they push me out of my comfort zone and make me grow.
What do you love the most about Strathmore?
I love the fact that we have consistent classes; I have friends in other universities who tell me how they miss classes due to various reasons.
I also feel privileged to be part of a university with many wonderful and well-needed resources; a good library, research centers and the supportive lecturers and students.
Do you feel like the co-curricular activities at Strathmore have prepared you for your future career?
Yes I do. I have learnt the skill of public speaking in communication which is really important, because I have been able to use this skill to sit on panels like the African Development Bank- Youth Unemployment Panel as the youth expert. I sat next to the Minister of Finance – Ethiopia and the Minister of Youth from Burundi at one point.
Through the Strathmore Business School (SBS) I have met experts that I have learnt from, during the public lectures. Last year I attended such a lecture where Vimal Shah attended and I got his business card. I emailed him I hope to get an internship at his company soon.
My course is competitive not only in Kenya but globally. I believe that Strathmore has equipped me with a good education, and the extra activities give me a chance to represent the Strathmore brand which is also exciting and an honour.
What would you advice other students on standing out and preparing their future?
I believe in the power of people and networking. I advise everyone I meet to always carry their business cards with them. You never know who you will meet.
We wish Tracy all the best in all her future endeavors.