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Why small business ventures appeal to most campus students

By Innocent Tsalwa | November 14th 2016

Getting good grades and having fat CVs is no longer a sure bet for getting jobs for campus students in Kenya.


A report by the Commission for Higher Education reveals that more than 50, 000 students graduate every year from public and private universities but only half of them are suitable for job employment.

While this has become a great challenge to graduates, a number of undergraduate students are opting for small business ventures with hopes that they will grow bigger as soon as they are done with their studies.

To some, the businesses act as mere ventures to get pocket money to keep them surviving in campus, while others take them as long life strategies especially if they are in line with their careers.

There are a variety of business engagements that campus students engage in, some which include printing and photocopying, online writing, operating cyber cafes, selling sausages, fruit drinks, groceries, clothes and shoes, operating boda bodas, among others.

These undertakings are not choosy on whether you are a pro or not, anyone can take up his or her interest and proceed so long as they have the skills needed for the jobs.

It is not peculiar to see a law student selling sausages and chips to comrades or a medicine student operating a printer or photocopy machine in his/her room. The primary target for the businesses is to generate income.

Government sponsored students explore most of these small scale businesses because many of them get pennies from the Higher Education Loans Board (HELB).

The students say those businesses are vital in making them engaged after they finish college as they look for jobs elsewhere. Successful businessmen and women from campus do not see the need for seeking for employment when they can employ themselves and even hire unemployed job seekers.

Moreover, professors in the universities in Kenya teach their students to be job creators and not only job seekers due to the limited number of spaces in the job market. This is why getting the best theoretical and practical application of one’s career is bound to make them succeed.

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