The 19th Kenya Institute of Social Work graduation ceremony was held on 21st September, 2018 at St. Andrews hall Nairobi.
The ceremony attracted hundreds of parents, guardians, sponsors, members of staff, students and the 2018 graduating class. The ceremony kicked off at 10.00 a.m.
The Chief Guest and Speaker was Prof. Charles Nzioka; Chairman – Department of Sociology and Social Work, University of Nairobi.
In his remarks; the Director of the Institute Mr. Mutie singled out several challenges that the TVET sector was facing;
He noted that there is a unhealthy competition between the Universities and TVET institutions as far as admissions of certificate and diploma students are concerned and that all students need to access HELB loans like their counterparts in pubic TVET institutions. He urged the Government address these challenges from a policy and at the National assembly level.
In his address to the Graduands; the Chief Guest had this to say;
“Whatever qualification is awarded to you today, it only represents one of your past accomplishments. What determines your future is your ceaseless efforts to learn. Today is a milestone in your life. It is also a memorable day for every tutor of the Institute and every parent, because the cultivation of talents requires the concerted efforts of many parties and takes many years to harvest. It is my sincere wish that every one of you will work even harder as you embark on a new journey in life. Have lofty aspirations.
Despite this encouragement, I am aware that any new graduand has three main fears : first, confronting the prospects of prolonged unemployment due to a national economic down turn; second, lack of real world experience; third, reconciling your high expectations and the dawning reality and finally, a tussle of choosing between seeking higher education and a job. I assure you these are normal challenges that face all new graduands. Chances are that you may therefore not get all your choices and priorities right, and failure may come visiting! In those circumstances, learn to turn failure into success. I wish to paraphrase the words of Carol Bartz (former president and CEO of the Internet Services Company Yahoo!) in her address to graduands at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2012
“Accept failure and learn from it. Failure is part of life, its part of every career, and you have to know how to take advantage of it. Failure must be seen as a sign of experience. Failure is part of work, its part of life. When you fail, recognize you’ve failed, but try to do it fast, learn from it, build on it, and move forward. Embrace failure, have it be part of your persona. You’re going to have long careers, and equally, you’re going to have many failures — personal, business, professional. But just use this as a building block to your next success.” Remember many successful people failed in their initial stages: Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, Henry Ford, Colonel Sanders (Kentucky Fried Chicken) etc
Remember what Eleanor Roosevelt (wife of President Franklin Roosevelt U.S. president 1933 to 1945), said:
“The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams”
Be dedicated to your profession. Endurance, optimism and perseverance are what your need in your profession. Be a good Social worker who is both professional and independent. Be persistent as well as accommodating.
In the kind words of Nora Roberts (a novelist) :
“If you do not go for what you want, you’ll never have it. If you do not ask, the answer will always be no. If you do not step forward, you will always be in the same place”
“Education,” Nelson Mandela famously said, “is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” Now it is up to you to prove to it.
A total of 277 students were awarded Certificates and Diploma. Those who excelled in various disciplines were also recognized for their good work.