BTE Student Stories

Ian Oyungi Niairobi

When Ian entered the Bridge to Employment (BTE) – Nairobi program he only knew about four careers: doctor, pilot, engineer, and teacher. Little did he know how BTE would teach him about the world of work– and the world.

After about a year in BTE Ian participated in a job shadow. He learned about careers in information technology (IT), sales, management, administration, and accounting. Today, Ian says he would like to pursue a career in IT, but knows that good grades and hard work will be essential to success in any career, IT or otherwise. As Ian stated, “I am still burning the midnight oil to make my grade B transform into an A… I will apply the knowledge I gather in BTE; good communication skills and the knowledge of good career choices and also problem solving to better my chances at the university and also the chances of getting employed at a medical-based firm.”

While Ian’s understanding of the world of work expanded through job shadowing, his understanding of the world changed when he was selected to be a 2015 Student Ambassador. In October 2015, Ian traveled to Washington, DC for the Alliance Building and Training Session (ABTS). Before ABTS Ian was excited to serve as an ambassador promoting his BTE program, Kenya, and Africa as a whole. He had never travelled outside of Kenya, so he had to get a passport and a visa. This was indeed a big and new experience. He was also anxious to demonstrate his skills and learn from other BTE students. While at the conference, Ian was diligent. He participated in the Student Ambassador Challenge, learned about distribution channels during a health crisis, and presented his work to a crowd of Johnson & Johnson professionals, educators, and other BTE partners. Ian spoke with confidence and a deep understanding of his work.

Today, Ian has returned home to Nairobi. He will share his experience with classmates, the entire school community, and his family and continue to work hard, knowing that his future is bright.