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Welcome to campus, freshers

By KEVIN OJIAMBO | May 8th 2017

This is the month our ‘Matiang’i siblings’ are joining us to quench their thirst of knowledge for higher education in the many (a little too many) universities in Kenya. In their pursuit to get here, there have been a few misconceptions about universities conditioned over time. Some are true, some are preposterous lies generated in good strides to motivate high schoolers.

 Some of these lies have gained dignity over time and are now considered true, most are outrageous lies that mislead everyone just to end up disappointed when they get here.

Due to ignorance and crowd mentality, some of this lies end up being practiced. To our new university students, you are in luck. They say if you want to effect change, you start in the roots. Let’s nip these garish habits in the bud. So, new students here are a few things you need to know about being a university student.

It is true there is freedom at the university; you choose what course to do, you choose whether to attend classes or not, you choose the type of people you wanna hang out with, you choose your own meal, you choose whether to go to “kesha” or “dunda” on Friday nights. In short, campus life is full of choices. There is freedom alright, but not freedom from your choices.

Getting by at the university is a hopeful endeavor. Most of the time you will either be flat ass broke or your budget will be so tight and getting tighter by every shilling spent. So, let frugality be your friend, no one cares the brand of phone you are using all they want is for you to reply their texts in a timely manner.

Boys, when the teacher said “soma, wasichana watajileta” he/she didn’t mean that you’ll be assigned a girlfriend with your admission later. They meant it as an eventuality. That it will happen way later in life, not immediately after the KCSE result release.

 To girls, these poor chaps did not stumble upon an oil well or a gold mine or better example win a Sportpesa jackpot while waiting to join the university. They had humble jobs like working M-pesa stalls, waiting tables at cafes and watching tones of TV shows. They earned peanuts for wages, and the little money they made they have probably used it on new timberland shoes and skinny jeans pants ready to receive their promised bride.

As you all know the common phrase “degree ni harambee” it means you are supposed to have a little something in the upstairs reserve to contribute. Take a few minutes or many ( it depends on your life goals) to read something. Anything. No one wants a charity case in the exam room. After all degree ni harambee si Charity.

Finally, no one cares what grade you got to get here so don’t go around shouting that ulipata B+ ya matiang”I, that will only make you look petty and quite honestly a showoff. No one likes a show-off.

Most of this is a bunch of hokum. University is a fun place to be, live your life the way you deem fit. Don’t let anyone dictate it for you, not your parents, not the society not anyone. Welcome to the campus!

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