- You can follow academia, as well as your passion.
- Education can open more employment opportunities – even in entertainment.
- You can excel at school and entertainment.
- Education is always something you can fall back on.
Entertainers and celebrities are usually only expected to entertain the public. It is seldom asked what type or level of education they possess, as this is usually not a factor in what they do. This, however, does not mean that education is not important for celebrities.
The unpredictable nature of the entertainment business is one of the reason’s that some have pursued their studies while in the lime light. Education helps solidify, amongst other things, the employability of a personality when their work environment changes.
There are several Kenyan personalities that have embarked on getting academically qualified while entertaining the masses. Below is a list of 7 celebrities who have chosen this path.
From Jomino Entertainment, has graduated with an engineering degree from Egerton University. Kaya acknowledged and expressed that “education opens up your mind. With the knowledge acquired, you start thinking outside the box and this gets reflected in the quality of your music”. He also expressed how it helped him in the way he packaged himself as a singer.
(Rosemary Wahu Kagwi,), the queen of ‘githafu’, is blessed with a pretty face, beautiful voice, and brains. She began working after highschool and used her money to enrol the University of Nairobi, where she studied for a Bachelor of Science degree and majored in Mathematics. She then further pursued her studies and obtained a master’s degree in Communication.
3. Esther Adongo Arunga
Also known as Esther Timberlake Esther Arunga, is an overachiever who holds a bachelor’s degree in communication, as well as a law degree from the University of Wollongong in New South Wales, Australia.
With many accolades in the media industry, including the 2008 CHAT (Chaguo La Teeniez) award for Best TV Anchor/Presenter, she decided to leave the industry and pursue other interests.
4. Nameless (David Mathenge)
The pro ‘mason’, like his wife Wahu, is blessed with talent and intellect. Nameless holds a Bachelor of Architectural Studies degree from the University of Nairobi.
Unlike some of his peers, Nameless first graduated before he reached fame. He was also involved in the building, as an architect, in building of the Hub Karen which is a KSh 4 billion shopping mall in Karen.
“The aim of education is the knowledge, not of facts, but of values.” – William S. Burroughs
5. DJ Crème de la Crème (George Njuguna)
His track record would falsely have you believe he was the nerdy type. The DJ grew up as an index one in primary school, scoring an A- in KCSE and graduating with a second-upper division Bachelor of Science degree in computer science from Kabarak University.
It is understandable why he never pictured himself as a DJ while growing up. His persistence for his passion proves that you can do good in both music and academics – if you remain focussed.
6. Kaka Sungura (Kennedy Ombima)
Also known by his stage name Rabbit, is not your typical rapper. Not only using his way with words for entertainment, Rabbit was among the top KCSE students in 2006.
Rabbit later enrolled in the Kenya College of Accounts and graduated with a degree in accounts. He eventually had to disappoint his family and follow a career in music. Not putting his formal education to waste, Rabbit still occasionally audits for his friends’ firms.
7. Frasha (Francis Amisi)
Commonly introduces himself as a doctor in his songs. Unlike other personalities who have chosen to refer to themselves as such, he can back it up. Frasha majored in physiotherapy and graduated at the Kenya Medical Training College (KMTC).
The singer only stopped actively practising as a doctor at the Aga Khan hospital in 2011. He later went on to the popular group P-Unit alongside Bon’Eye, Gabu.
8. The Elani band
The Elani band (Maureen Kunga, Bryan Chweya and Wambui Ngugi) are quite the super group. Not only have they been able to be successful in their passions, but they have also been able to be highly qualified academically.
Maureen Kunga and Bryan Chweya went to law school and are qualified advocates while Wambui Ngugi holds a degree in actuarial science. It is evident that this group not only sync well musically, but also intellectually.
The personalities mentioned above are good examples for their followers, young and old. Having all graduated or reached fame at different points of their lives, they show that following your passion does not have to be in the way of your academics.
The moral of the story is that we can be whatever we want to be, provided we work hard and consistently towards it. With education we can unlock many avenues, within and outside, of our passions. It is thus important to strive and be educated in our desired paths.
“Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family.” – Kofi Annan