Kenya’s society deemed Mwangi Mukami a failure for scoring a mean grade of D+ in his Kenya Certificate of Secondary Educatįon (KCSE).
Mwangi Mukami has shared an inspirational story on how he achieved academic success in the United States of America (USA) years after he was written off by the Kenyan education system.
His future was bleak, given the limited opportunities available to those who did not attain a university degree in Kenya. Their “failure” left them to fate.
“Over 20 years ago, Kenya’s educational system wrote me off as a failure because I had a D+. I remember vividly saying to my peers that I wanted to be a policymaker or an attorney. Their response was a burst of collective laughter and sneer,” he said.
Today, Mwangi is an acclaimed intellectual with five academic degrees, the lastest being a Master’s degree in Public Affairs from the University of California’s Goldman School of Public Policy achieved in 2019.
Mwangi also holds a double major in Political Science and International Relations, magna c*m laude from San Francisco State University, and two associate degrees; in arts and humanities and behavioral science, with honors, from City College of San Francisco.
Mwangi believes that his achievement emanates from his commitment to humanity rather than academic prowess.
Before leaving Kenya in 2009, Mwangi served as the first male children’s president of the Kenyan Children’s cabinet in 2003, making history as the only child to participate in its entirety the Bomas Constitutional Process that culminated in the adoption of the 2010 Constitution of Kenya.
He also founded and served as youth president of the National Youth Parliament and Chair of Africa of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Africa Foundation.
Mukami said his relocation from Kenya to the US enabled him to attain his dream of university educatįon. He also attributes his success to his mother, a single parent, who raised him and his six siblings while selling groceries such as oranges, tomatoes, and onions at the Kawangware market. “Congratulations to my mom.
The degree is a reflection of her tenacity. I am grateful and honored to have wonderful brothers and sisters who support and trust my ability to achieve,” he added.
Now aged 36, the young man recently graduated with his fifth degree from the University of California and hopes he will live long to open doors of opportunities for more D+ students.
The 36-year-old further disclosed that for three years now, he has been providing scholarships and relief grants to children in Kawangware and most recently, in Kibera and Mathare.