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Why Many Degree Holders Do Not Live a Fulfilling Life

Vincent Nyoike
Vincent Nyoike

It is the dream of every learner to get a degree. I would encourage every student to work hard in primary and secondary school to get a placement in the university. Getting a good degree is pretty fine and congratulations if you have one. Having a degree helps you to be competitive in the job market. However, having a degree can also be a hindrance to achieving your full potential. Do I sound to be contradicting myself? Let’s take these two analogies to drive may point home.

This is why degree holders are among the poorest people in society.

How many people did you complete the same year secondary school education? How many people made it to the university? Out of those who went to the university, how many have jobs paying them over Ksh 30,000? Now, focus on those who didn't make it to the university. How many of them are self-employed? Assuming some became masons and are paid Ksh 1,500 per day. If you spread that across the month, they can make Ksh 40,000 in a month.  

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Now, let's focus on another analogy. Focus on this young man who completed his secondary education and didn't make it to the university. Maybe he undertook a certificate course in the nearby vocation training centre. Or rather, let's assume he didn't study any course after secondary education. Instead, he bought a motorcycle and now is a boda boda operator. Out of his boda boda business, he makes Ksh 1,000 daily. Also, this boda boda operator is married and owns a cow.

Every day, he milks and sells at least 5 litres of milk. From the 5 litres of milk, he makes Ksh 200 daily. His wife sells kales and makes roughly Ksh 300 per day. Cumulatively, the family makes Ksh 1,500 per day. The family has built a one-bedroom house for his family and the primary expenses are the family basic needs.

Now, let us focus on university graduate. He graduated with a good degree and is still jobless. All he has are a few suits, the latest smart phone in the market and a certificate. He moves from one office to the other looking for a white color job.

In the four years the university graduate spent in the university, the boda boda operator was busy with his motorcycle investment. He managed to buy a cow, build a house and also got married. By the time the graduate graduates, the boda boda operator is settled and has accumulated some assets.

Assuming it will take a graduate two years to find a well-paying job with a net pay of Ksh 30,000, the boda boda operator has already set up other businesses. For six years, he saved enough, used his motorbike logbook to borrow a bank loan and bought a matatu. He does ditch his motorcycle; instead, he let it to another boda boda operator for Ksh 300 per day while he is the matatu's conductor. Cumulatively, he has three sources of income; the matatu, boda boda and the sale of milk. From this, he makes Ksh 2,000 on the lower side per day. By the end of the month, he will be making Ksh 60,000. Don't forget that his wife has a business. He decides to opens a boutique and a salon for his wife. The wife then starts making Ksh 1,000 daily from the two businesses. Cumulatively, the family will be making Ksh 3,000 from their businesses. In a month, the total revenue is Ksh 90,000.

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What is my point anyway? I'm not saying people should not work hard to go to universities, but my point is that a secondary school dropout has more chances of making it in life than a university graduate. It is because he or she can do odd jobs to make ends meet. To sum it up, education is good, but it can be a hindrance sometimes.