2 reasons Kenyan youth should consider starting a career with Internship [Pulse Contributor's Opinion]

Due process is always the best option

Internship graphic

In May 2021, the Senate of Kenya welcomed interns to Parliament.

In a rare spectacle where the politicians were honest and delivered a true message of hope, the members of the senate - led by Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen - dissected the significance of internships.

We are at the age where every student aspires to grow sporadically after schooling.

The fantasy of living in mansions and driving Ferraris instantaneously is usually nagging. Sadly, very few know the survival reality of the world.

There are chances to be so; scarce is the word to give attention. Due process is always the best option; in this case the internships.

1. Learn from experts

The best way to become a master in any field is to accept tutelage and internships provide one with the necessities of the chosen career path.

The gap between the classroom theories and the practical application of the acquired knowledge is filled during the internship programs. As an intern, one can test whether what they thought was their line is the true calling or it was a mere misconception.

The general conclusion on this matter is that for one to be a good professional, exposure to the masters is the best foundation. That is the ideal way, however; it should never be misconstrued as a highway for becoming copycats, when it is a way of learning the basics, the foundations, and then exploring based on one’s creativity.

This message is not reserved for those who are in colleges desiring to get into the corporate world, but also for those in all other fields such as leadership and governance.

Time spent in internship programs is important for professionals. It is the incubation period for growing wings in the professional ladder.

2. Opportunities

Numerous private organizations are offering internships, fellowships andeven graduate trainee programmes.

Of more interest however, should be the opportunities being offered by government continental and international organizations.

The Public Service Commission (PSC), in 2019 took 3,100 university graduates for internship placement within the public service.

One can apply for these internship opportunities, once they are announced, on the PSC website via this link.

Such an internship is a good foot in the door should one need to apply for a vacancy within the department where they provided their expertise.

The African Union (AU) also has an ongoing internship program which is renewable upon re-application after three months. Apply here.

Global institutions such as the Africa Leadership University, the Young African Leaders Initiative and the Mastercard Foundation are also a good place to start.

Secret of readership

Apart from the internships, another brilliant way of learning for youths who would love to be leaders is reading.

Reading great autobiographies and biographies of leaders such as former U.S. President Barrack Obama and the late former South African President Nelson Mandela can be very resourceful. The slogan that readers are leaders has great truths.

In the biographies, leaders share their stories in details that hardly hit the news headlines. One gets the opportunity to learn not just from their public lives but also from their social life struggles.

If for instance former President Obama in his book, A Promised Land discusses the importance of having a strong team that supported and believed in his dream, his family struggles and sacrifices, an aspiring leader should be psychologically prepared for such experiences.

In a wrap, the lesson for the youthful leaders reading this piece is; learn as much as possible. Learn through internship programs, readership of biographies from leaders in your area of interest.

To be informed is to be armed, to be armed is to be ready and one who is ready has no excuse to hesitate from pursuing their dreams and aspirations.

The foregoing is an Article submitted by Gichimu Njeri to Pulse Live Kenya for publication, it does not necessarily represent the position of the publisher.

Gichimu Njeri (pictured) is a bilingual wordsmith, poet and a seasoned educator who loves reading. He has a soft spot for matters youth and children which make them major characters in his works. "Jomo and the Wild Cats", "Whitened Black and Other Poems" and "Ari ya Pasha" are some of his published works.

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