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muricho, juma

student, Education, University of nairobi (Kenya)

EFA expertise and area of competenceGoal 5. Gender; Goal 6. Quality education
Instruction and training; Outreach
Educational legislation; Educational reform; Education and employment; Economics of education; Educational policy
Africa; Arab States; Asia and the Pacific; Europe and North America; Latin America and the Caribbean; Egypt; Jordan; Rwanda; South Africa
English; Swahili

I am motivated to apply for this position because I share the commitment of UNDP to change lives across the world. My motivation is borne from the fact that I have personally experienced the life-changing impact of good governance through people and institutions that have contributed to my professional development. Out of that experience I live by a philosophy to giving my best to processes and focusing on sustainable outcomes.  

My mother passed on when I was a child and my grandmother took up my education. She had to meticulously spare her little savings from farming and to convince the schools I attended to allow me a flexible fee-payment plan. These schools had good governance that allowed me to convert effort expended towards odd jobs into school fees.

This exposure to hardship drew me to the plight of my fellow youth who were not in school for similar reasons. In 2007, I lobbied my fellow students from my High School to form Tongaren Jipange Youth Group through which we embarked on with self-help activities for members. I served as the inaugural Secretary General of that Youth Group from inception up to 2010 when I handed over leadership in order to pursue undergraduate studies at the University of Nairobi . We started by mobilizing a humble kitty of about KShs. 5000/= from voluntary subscriptions with which we nurtured  commercially viable tree seedlings. Although that we sold the seedlings at marginal profit, we kept good accounts and this enabled us to start poultry farming.

The Group has since diversified into fish and dairy farming, table banking  and investments in securities. I continue to associate with the group as their patron; connecting the leadership of the group with networks and their opportunities within my reach and assisting them with innovations and activities whenever called upon.

Coming from this encouraging this experience, I was inspired to go into leadership at the University of Nairobi. I successfully vied for the post of Representative to the Senate for the School of Education Kikuyu Campus. Together with other student leaders within my college, we were able to allocate bursaries to needy students from the Students' Union kitty and connect them to work-study programmes run by the University and other partners in the corporate world. However, student leadership comes with challenges, striking a balance between the interests of the Students and those of the  University Administration was challenging. However, with mentorship from Prof. Henry Mutoro, then the Principal of the School of Education and now the Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of Nairobi, I was able to  strike viable compromise on several occasions thereby diffusing student unrest throughout my tenure.

During that time, I also volunteered  with the NGO 'I Choose Life Africa'. It targeted tertiary learning institutions to reach out to students affected with substance abuse, HIV and AIDS. I was inspired by its goal of changing lives through behaviour change communication. I was trained on Peer Education, HIV and AIDS and life skills and upon completion, I formed a behaviour change group comprising students abusing substances, those affected and/or infected with HIV & AIDS and one who had been rejected by friends on grounds that he was a thief. He concluded his studies a more sociable and commendable person to the community. Under the leadership of the NGO, we also organized community outreach activities like visiting those affected by HIV& Aids in the disenfranchised neighbourhoods to discuss issues such a stigma and provide relevant sex education to the youth. Given that I was a student leader at the time, I successfully lobbied students to collect items such as shoes, clothes and foodstuff for donation during those visits.

The student leadership also presented me with an opportunity to attend a workshop dubbed 'A Collaborative Workshop on Three Steps to Envision Higher Education for All'. I represented all undergraduate learners in Kenya in the three day workshop that took place from 24th January 2013 under the auspices of the International Association of Universities in collaboration with UNESCO and the University of Nairobi. The workshop reviewed the milestones made on the Millennium Development Goals on Education and linked them with the then unfolding Sustainable Development Goals.

Out of all these leadership engagements, I learnt that the art of effective communication is essential to persuasion and that policy formulation calls for collective responsibility and commitment  from all stakeholders. It was a great honour to work with the seasoned members of the  University administration, and with I Choose Life Africa. I intend to apply the leadership lessons as Programmes Manager if given the opportunity.

In the run up to the 2013 general elections, I volunteered to work as communications consultant at the Raila Odinga Presidential Campaign Secretariat. I was in charge of Western region which consisted of five Counties- Bungoma, Vihiga, Busia, Kakamega and Trans-Nzoia. My duties included linking up with the presidential campaign agents to obtain vital information to assist the presidential candidate in his campaigns. It required good organizational and leadership skills to coordinate a team of five assistants and more than 1500 agents on the ground to accomplish smooth flow of information. I also used the opportunity to understand the set-up of county government structures which could be useful to this post.

I have a passion for sharing knowledge. I began teaching way before my secondary school results were out. Immediately after my last examinations at Bishop Philip Anyolo Secondary School in Kakamwe , I was called in by the School to assist in marking Mathematics and History for the lower classes. Before long, I was assigned lessons to teach. I believe the principal spotted my passion and wanted to nurture me along that path. It was a great challenge to teach alongside the very teachers who had just finished taking me through High School. They taught me organizational skills, good record keeping and the teachers' code of conduct. I taught from 2009 January up to 2010 October when I joined the University of Nairobi for undergraduate studies. When it was time for internship, the same Bishop Philip Anyolo Secondary School in Kakamwe gave me an opportunity undertake teaching practice between May and August 2013. While there,  I served in the school mapping committee and as a football coach besides teaching Mathematics and Business Studies. In May 2014 while awaiting graduation, I taught at Wonderland secondary School in Nairobi where was appointed a class teacher for Form Three and Games Patron besides teaching Mathematics and Business Studies. As Games Patron, I successfully organized an  Annual Games day at Kasarani National Stadium. I thus honed my multitasking and organizational skills, to demonstrate team spirit while undertaking these teaching assignments.

Since 2014 I have been on temporary assignment as an Administrative Assistant with Masinde and Wekesa Associates, an accountancy and auditing firm. The experience helped me to utilize and develop some of the specialist knowledge that I acquired as part of my undergraduate studies being. Some of the specialist courses I took were, Accounting for Government and Non-Profit Entities, Public Finance and Policy,  Education and Development , Intermediate Micro-Economics, Macro Economics, Economic Development and Planning, Financial management, Management Accounting, Principles of Tax Accounting and Auditing. I am confident that this opportunity, if given will offer an even better chance to apply these to our mutual benefit.

 

Programmes management involves leadership, strategic planning , stakeholder engagement , timely execution, monitoring the implementation process, measuring the outcomes and documenting the lessons for reinvestment into the project cycle. The UNDP is known for harnessing the best of these skills to empower nations such as Kenya.  I yearn to be part of the process and I am confident that I have the required knowledge, skills and aptitude required to accomplish the objectives of the UNPD if granted this opportunity. Thank you.

 

Contact informationmurichoj@yahoo.com

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