By Pauline Wanja, Programme Manager in Kenya
TumuTumu public High School for girls is a couple of hours outside Nairobi, in Kenya. Almost 900 students at the school came together on 8 March for an all-day careers event to hear from former students of their school about their careers and to discuss future options, life skills and more.
The event, led by the alumni and facilitated by Future First Kenya, was the first of the kind at the school. Students heard from and spoke at length with 21 alumni, including a civil engineer, a banker, a photographer and a Human Resources Manager.
95% of the girls who attended said it made them want to work harder and helped them to believe in their future success. 96% of students said that hearing from former students about careers was much better than other sources of advice available to them.
The alumni promised to conduct the alumni sessions regularly and explore ways of supporting current students and motivating them to work hard in school. Three months after the event, the alumni returned to the school this for yet another alumni event, the Alumni Awards Day. The event was attended by 8 alumni who had coordinated with members of the alumni association to donate money toward the purchase of the Awards and Prizes. The Awards were given to top three best students in each form: the most improved student, the most all-rounded student and the school’s head girl for providing exemplary leadership. The prizes included phones, branded mugs, shopping vouchers and bath items.
The plan is to have the Alumni Awards Day as an annual event with the aim of motivating students to work hard in school. The secretary of the alumni association explained that the most improved student category of awards was within every student reach, they didn’t have to be position one but to demonstrate an effort and every student can do that, the alumni promised to award more awards in this category in the next Alumni Awards Day.