With the 2022 KCSE results out, many students out there are thinking of what to do with their lives. Many will be joining colleges and universities, while others will pursue employment and entrepreneurship. Whatever the path, Loud.co.ke wishes them the best!
While others immediately get into the job market to gain experience and grow in various fields, some form four leavers get jobs to pay fees, support their families or supplement their income in campus, which for most 'comrades' might include pocket money and HELB Loans.
Here, we look at entrepreneurship and job ideas and opportunities for Form Four Leavers in Nairobi and Kenya, regardless of the situation. The most important thing to note is that despite the comparatively lower barrier of entry for these opportunities, learning your job and field and becoming a master of your craft by putting in the work, time and dedication is essential for success in any of them. And also, this is only the tip of the iceberg. This is by no means a exhaustive list, read on to the entrepreneurship section to find out why the possibilities are endless.
- Software Developer
You can become a software developer thanks to the massive resources available for anyone willing to learn. This will enable you to earn once you are able to put your skills to use and take on jobs either for clients, for an employer or by building a tech company yourself. Digital platforms such as FreeCodeCamp and CodeAcademy among numerous others allow anyone to start learning different programming languages without requiring a college degree, while websites such as YouTube offer great insights as well. You can also connect with your peers and experienced developers in Kenya on social media communities and spaces.
- Content Creator
Content creation is another path Form Four leavers can pursue today. Platforms that enable you to monetize your content directly include YouTube, Facebook, Tik Tok or your own website or app through services such as Google AdSense. Key to success on these platforms is interesting content and being consistent with your output. Identify which niches or topics you want to target with your content. As you grow a large and loyal audience, you might also be able to pursue potentially lucrative brand partnerships, advertising, and sponsorship deals.
As a form four leaver, you can secure your Drivers' License from the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) as long as you're above the age of 18 - provided you have enrolled in driving school and received the required certification for passing the exam. Getting your license, coupled with your KCSE certificate, will allow you to take on driver jobs in different organizations.
You can become a chef in Kenya. There are self-taught chefs, but you can also go to culinary school or use online resources to improve your skills. As a chef, you can pursue several career options - such as working in hotels or starting your own catering business or your own restaurant/hotel. You can even combine two career paths and become a food content creator, such as self-taught chef Dennis 'The Roaming Chef' Ombachi - a former Rugby star who was named Tik Tok's Top Content Creator in Africa in 2022 for his food content which gets millions of views from around the world.
Are you a talented sports man or woman? Whether its football, volleyball, hockey, cricket or even niche sports such as chess. Stay in shape and keep practicing, attend trials at local clubs and teams, and work at becoming a better sportsperson everyday. You can make money by being contracted by clubs to play professionally or semi-professionally, representing the national team, brand endorsements and winning tournaments. Kenya Chess champion Mehul Gohil, for instance, won the 2022 Kenya National Championships and drove home with a brand new car for the second time in three years.
If you're a smart student and you performed well in your KCSE exams, you can start your own tutoring business. Many tutors in Kenya charge by the hour. You can start by offering your services to neighbors in your area, or family friends as you grow. Make sure you take the time to prepare effective sessions with the people you're tutoring and, radiate passion and belief as you teach.
A form four leaver in Kenya can open their own restaurant. It requires capital, which you can source from family, friends, investors or your own savings, and business acumen as you will have to buy equipment, secure licenses, engage suppliers and hire staff as the business grows. You will also need to make sure your business model works and you have a great location, or you can alternatively cook from home and use delivery services and social media to promote and sell your products.
You can get a job as a waiter or waitress in Kenya as a Form Four leaver. Search for vacancies shared online on job boards and through word of mouth, or visit local restaurants, bars, clubs and hotels enquiring about opportunities.
- Start-Up Founder
Founding your own startup requires you to come up with a great business idea, and to develop a minimum viable product (MVP) to put out into the market. You can find the capital from your own savings, family and friends or by seeking out investors. Most investors, however, want to see more than an idea, which is why a minimum viable product is important - prove that there is a need for your thing and that it works!
- eSports Player
If you are really good at video games, perhaps you should consider getting into eSports. Top players earn money for winning tournaments, and can sign lucrative deals to play for various teams, as well as sponsorships. For instance, Kenya's talented Tekken player Malika Siheme 'Queen Arrow' - one of Kenya's biggest eSports stars - signed to RedBull Gaming.
If you have a valid driver's license and access to a vehicle suitable for transportation, such as a pick-up truck or lorry, you can become a transporter. You can charge people to transport goods, or to help them move houses, or simply to get them from point A to B. Make sure you know what your expenses are, such as fuel and maintenance costs, to enable you to price your services appropriately.
- Cab Driver/ Motorcycle Rider
It has never been easier to become a cab driver, thanks to the rise of ride-hailing apps such as Uber and Bolt. All you require is a drivers license and access to an eligible vehicle. Sign up on the services and follow the guidelines. This also works with motorcycles. Besides the apps, you can join local boda boda associations and station yourself at local stages.
Do you have an ear for good music? Can you keep the party lit? Being a DJ might be the job for you. However, you need to practice and get your skills up. You can start with softwares such as VirtualDJ or Serato, or get professional controllers if you can afford it. Alternatively, you can also begin as an apprentice by connecting with resident DJs at local clubs and entertainment joints in your area, enabling you to learn on the job.
As a musician, you can earn from live performances, streaming services, merchandise sales and brand endorsements among other revenue streams. But first, you need to build a fanbase by putting out good music and promoting your music and yourself across different digital, broadcast and print platforms. Social media offers artists today the quickest way to build some buzz, so make sure to constantly share your music and to connect with others in the entertainment industry who can help you grow your career.
- Event Organizer
Organizing events is all about curating experiences that people enjoy. It also requires a knack for business to profitably run an event. You need to figure out venues, stages, sound and lighting, performers, activities, security and more. You can make money primarily from ticket sales and getting brands to sponsor your event.
Writing is still such a useful skill that can be put to use in various ways. As a writer straight out of Form Four, you can start publishing content on your own blog or website, or get published by other platforms including popular websites and newspapers. Many platforms are willing to pay for quality written content. Your own blog or website can allow you to monetize through ads or by charging subscriptions, among other potential revenue streams. You can also do academic writing, which requires great research and technical skills. You can bid for assignments on various platforms such as Upwork, Fiverr and Guru.com. You can also pursue a career as an author of books - fiction and non-fiction, novels, story books, you name it.
- Make-Up Artist
Make-up Artists today charge princely sums for their services. But you need to have the skills. You can learn everything you need to know from tutorials and courses online or at beauty colleges. You also need some basic makeup and brushes to start offering your services. Use social media and word of mouth as marketing tools. You can practice on your friends before jumping into business. Once you start charging, run it professionally and make sure you keep track of your profit margins and expenses. You can earn from doing makeup for individuals or for several people for events such as weddings and birthdays, or for events and film/tv productions.
- Voice-Over Artist
Do you have a great voice? Your skills could be put to use as a voice-over artist. As a VO artist, you can voice anything from adverts to documentaries, promos and more. Watch out for auditions and opportunities at local arts organizations, production studios, media houses and talent agencies.
- Video Director
Directors are central figures in the production of music videos, TV shows, documentaries, ads and films among other formats. You need to learn the basics of video directing, editing and producing, but the key is to constantly work on your skills and improving your level. Write, shoot and edit as much as you can, and experiment with different styles and ideas. Resources for those willing to learn exist online or in various higher learning institutions offering production courses.
Actors and actresses in Kenya can earn through their performances on TV shows, plays, films, ads, web series, their original content and more. You need to have the skills, and commitment as well as dedication. To seek opportunities, look out for auditions online or at art centres such as Kenya National Theatre (KNT).
- Visual Artist
Are you talented at drawing, painting or digital design? You can pursue a career as a visual artist. You can sell your own artworks, work with brands on their designs, or sell digital art and merchandise.
As a comedian in Kenya, you can earn from digital content creation and performances at live events, your own shows as well as event hosting and brand partnerships and endorsements. You can also find opportunities on TV and film to propel your career forward. If you've got the jokes, you can start by sharing content online, and/or checking out local comedy bars and comedy nights, and standup groups and events in Nairobi such as Standup Collective.
As mentioned earlier, this list is not exhaustive, and the opportunities out there for a form four leaver are endless. Below are some more jobs and opportunities. Like everything else on this list, they requires you to learn the job first. For any of these jobs, they can be done either by being self-taught, utilizing online resources or being an apprentice - learning from someone on the job, or by undertaking formal courses in colleges and universities.
Many of the jobs in this article are also entrepreneurial opportunities. We can't even begin to cover all the opportunities there are for entrepreneurs today. Don't be scared to take the leap, but make sure you do your own thorough research, develop a viable business model, raise capital, establish the business while ensuring legal and tax compliance, maintain discipline and drive growth.
- Electrical Technician
- Music Producer
- Hair Stylist
- Construction Worker
- Interior Designer