The Tales And Realities of Being An intern in Kenyan Corporates and Firms

Joy Waweru | 1 year ago
The Tales and Realities of Being An intern Lawyer in Kenyan Corporates and Firms

A degree is highly coveted in Kenya. Being a university student has for a long time been something to brag about until you complete your studies and hit the job market.

That's when you realize that indeed mambo Kwa ground ni different.

After being awarded a bachelor’s degree and being given powers to read and do all that pertains to the degree you expect to thrust deep into the depths of your job and practise what you learnt at the university.

Not so for many interns. If you fail to stand your ground and ask for a proper Job description you end up running errands such as welcoming visitors into the office, serving them beverages of their choice, and picking laundry for your boss from the dry cleaners.

This is the sad reality for the majority of interns going by the narratives peddled in the social media streets.

In some firms, you will be asked to pay for your internship. The argument usually is that training is expensive on the employer's side. Whether that is fraud or rightfully justified is a story for another day.

Stories of successful internships also exist but the terrible experiences by far and large outdo the excellent experiences. In top-tier firms, the lucky interns get suitable working conditions, and a stipend and are eventually absorbed into permanent employment after successful completion.

Most interns are overworked yet underpaid. As a matter of fact, you are lucky if you get compensated at the end of the month. Most corporates and firms should offer services in exchange for experience and ‘exposure’.

The latest trending story is that of Nkatha challenging the decision of an intern to use an UBER to serve corporate clients instead of walking to do the delivery.

Kenyans on Twitter have not taken the comment lightly some calling her out for being petty and unreasonable.

A tweeter also challenges the firm proprietor to shut down her firm for lack of capacity.

The big question however is if indeed interns really bring no value to the table or if corporates have resulted to interns as cheap labour.

If conducted correctly, internships have the capacity to start you off on the right footing by installing requisite skills and competencies.

Paid internships are a way of attracting young and resourceful brains into the company.

It is therefore only fair to give credit where its due and compensate accordingly.

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