Why KCSE superstars are headed west.

By now, the dust on KCSE results has settled and few people remember even remember the names of the top stars. However, just a week after the release of the KCSE results, some 400 medical students held a demonstration demanding to be posted. The medical student graduates are through their studies and want to be posted. The Health ministry is awaiting some 400 Million shillings or thereabouts in order to post them. These were the same students that appeared on TV screens with joy as they let the nation know their ambitions of becoming a doctor. This is perhaps why; some students have given the local employment scene a wide berth. Such students get the basic education in Kenya and receive the advanced education and professional refinement in the west. Google searches on the students who topped KCSE in the 1990s and the 2000s.

A simple Google search on top student in KCSE 1989, Naeem Samnakay (Alliance High School), reveals that he went to Australia to pursue medical studies.
A search on the top student in 1990, Fred Were, from Starehe, reveals that he went to the US for further studies and is a now a medical researcher there.
A search on Gilbert Tengetta, from Mang’u High School and top student in 1992,
reveals that he went to the US to pursue engineering studies where he is up to date. Similarly ,some of the other top students went to various western universities.
They include:
-Kirimani Murithi-(Read about Kirimania Murithi's story here)Alliance High School-MIT.
Timothy Thairu-Alliance High school(KCSE 1998)- Harvard
Samuel Gikandi(KCSE)1999-Alliance High school-MIT.
Dhar Tishampati (KCSE 2000) –Mang’u High school –University of Adelaide
Amit Monga- Starehe Boys center-(KCSE 2001)–McGill University
Hillary Mucheru-(Nguviu Boys)KCSE 2001-Harvard
Isaac Nyang’olo –(Mang’u)KCSE 2001-Harvard
Paul Bundi(kenyakine High school), the top student in our year(2002) was actually the first KCSE top student to study in the country. Enrolled at UON for medical degree. The main reason could be that he came from a lesser known school and did not know how to apply to some of the universities in the west.
James Kandie Rotich-Moi High school kabarak-MIT
Some of the other students without remembering the years that they left high school include:
-Zawadi Lemayian (Read Zawadi Lemayian's story here) –Alliance Girls High school-MIT
-Paul K Njoroge –(Read Paul K Njoroge's story here)Starehe Boys Center-Who went to MIT before becoming a become a Rhodes scholar.
-Wanjiku Mungai-Precious Blood Girls-Harvard(Currently a freshman)
-John Kimani kamau (Read John Kimani's Harvard student's blog)–Nairobi School-Harvard (Currently a freshman)
-Anthony Mabonga-Alliance High School- Currently at Harvard
-Brian Oduor -Alliance High school-Yale Graduate student
-Dennis Okumu Ouma-Alliance High school- MIT-who completed his undergraduate through PhD in just eight years.he has several engineering patents.
-Irene Murimi -MIT
-Martin Mbaya-Alliance High School-MIT/Harvard
Given that this is just a small sample, how many students could actually have left? Your guess is as good as mine. Of course, some will start proclaiming about patriotism but in the current globalized world, competition for talent is stiff and talented people will move to areas where they feel their skills are appreciated. equally important, such universities as Harvard have huge endowments and our local universities may be unable to compete for the KCSE cream. Such students get full scholarships and a return ticket which they are unwilling to use to come back to their home countries. Thus, do not be surprised when last years top boy Albert Wandui kamau and top girl Mwangasha Lydia katini follow the same trends.

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Tourism in Kenya.

As you are about to embark on touring Kenya, you will need a few facts so that you can enjoy your stay in Kenya. Tourism is one of the major foreign exchange earners in Kenya and as such, the government has taken many steps in order to encourage tourism in Kenya.

Kenya is a country that is located in the east coast of Africa. The country’s president is Mwai Kibaki and the Prime Minister is Raila Odinga.The official language is English although Kiswahili is the most widely spoken language. The capital city is Nairobi. Other major towns include Mombasa, Nakuru, Kisumu and Eldoret.It would help if you mastered some few Kiswahili words before touring Kenya. For instance,’Habari yako’ means ‘How are you?’. On the other hand,’Asante sana’ means ‘Thank you very much’. In general Kenyans are hospitable people although such words will make you appear as friendly.

The local currency is the Kenya shilling (Kshs).One US dollar exchanges at a rate of between kshs.70 to 80 shillings. When visiting Kenya, it is important to carry some upfront money. There are many forex bureaus in the capital city. You can also exchange your money in the banks which are spread throughout the country. If you are intent on using an ATM to withdraw your money, then Barclays bank is the most reliable since it accepts almost all global cards. It accepts Visa, mastercard, visa electron, American express and a host of other cards. It is also spread throughout the country.CFC stanbic bank is also reliable although it is only found in the major towns.

Tourism in Kenya has many aspects. You can choose to go to and visit the beautiful coastline with sandy beaches. An example of such a beach a beach is the Diani beach. You can also sight see the wildlife and the big five animals are a common occurrence in the country.Lions, elephants, giraffes; gazelles are a common occurrence in the national parks. There are over fifty national parks in the country each with its own diversity. The most famous national park is the Massai Mara. It is home to the annual wildebeest migration that sees over a million wildebeests cross over to the Tanzanian side every year. The migration occurs in July/August. Kenya is also home to the Rift valley which ahs many beautiful escarpments. There are also prehistoric sites such as Hells Gate and the Olduvai Gorge. There are many fresh water lakes such as Lake Nakuru, Naivasha, Baringo, Victoria that offer rich flora and fauna. There are other biodiversities such as the rare plant species in kakamega forest. The major mountains in the country are Mount Kenya and Mount Elgon.Many rivers flow from these mountains. Of course, tourism in Kenya will not be complete without interaction with the local community.

If you plan on touring Kenya, then you have to do so in advance. The temperatures are warm throughout the year and average about 20-25 degrees. Sunshine is always out although it may be les during the rainy seasons sometime between April and June. There are cheap flights to Kenya and it will be important to book early. The national carrier is Kenya airways. Other airlines that ply the Kenyan route include Emirates, Virgin Atlantic and Qatar Airways. There are plenty of hotels in the country in which you can be accommodated. Some of the international hotels include Hilton hotel, Intercontinental hotel, sarova Stanley hotel, Norfolk hotel etc.Hope you will find tourism in Kenya to be a very nice experience.