May 4, 2023

Finding success in unexpected places

Last year during our reunion, I happened to have an extended chat with Sifuni around the bonfire. I suppose it makes sense to call it a fire chat. One thing that really stood out for me was how invested he is in education and our alumni, and how he believes there is so much we can achieve. If there is one person who I think can be the President of this country, it has to be Sifuni. We all remember him being the school Head Prefect, but even after school, his unique leadership acumen lives on. He went on to become the President of his university. For him, it’s less about the titles and more about how he conducts himself and how he is always ready to help people. The best school team goalkeeper ever? That’s a discussion for another day; he is always there to save the day.  

In this special, we wanted to chat with him about his career path especially how he found success in an unrelated field. Sifuni took PCB and wanted to be a doctor. In college, he went on to pursue a Bachelor of Science in Education with a concentration in Chemistry and Biology. “My dream was to become medical personnel, but the dream did not come to fruition due to reasons such as stiff competition for medical school at the time, specifically for government universities. Private universities had very high tuition fees that I couldn't afford at the time”, Sifuni added.

Fast forward after missing out on medical school, Sifuni challenged himself to work even harder in education with the anticipation to work in one of the best, and most famous schools that he has been hearing about during his time at school. “I leveraged guidance from the teachers, and the career offices at St Jude’s and college, and went on to graduate with a top GPA. So just before I sat for my last semester examinations I heard about a job vacancy at Feza schools. I gave it a trial and I got it the same day, the grades, confidence, skills, background, and the daring gave me the job”. Sifuni added.  It’s about the ability to see something that needs to be done and stepping up to do it. That sense of self-drive, self-awareness, insight, and personal motivation. That is a game-changing habit that can help you stand out during your community service, in college, or at work.

“You know, I give my all (my best) in whatever I do, and this has always rewarded me with great results, I give trials to every opportunity that I meet in my profession and results keep me moving always. I don't give up!” Sifuni ’16. Talk about challenging yourself! It’s the St Jude’s DNA.

Sifuni, a diehard Arsenal fan who also takes a lot of inspiration from Ben Carson, hinted at how he takes care of his mental health amidst trying to pursue all these. “Recently mental health has become a sensitive matter, I personally try my best to keep myself positive, I engage in different activities such as sports, rest time, debates, family time, good meals, and body health; all these keep me active (busy),” he insisted. How do you take care of your mental health?

Are you stranded with what to do in college? Confused about your career path? ‘’You should always work hard in whatever you do and give trials to every opportunity that comes your way because it’s not only what you study in school that will be used in real life. Everything counts and everything comes at the right time, you just need to be equipped,” wise words from Sifuni.

Just like Sifuni insisted, we call upon all Alumni to take care of their mental health. Seek resources around your workplace, university, Alumni Office, and the BSJSP Psychologist should you need help. Your body, mind, and spirit rely on your mental health.