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26/07/2011

First Year in Campus- A make or break Year.

The First Year in Campus, otherwise known as the Freshman year, is known to be a very intriguing year.
Freshers, as First Year students are known, usually shed off their naivety in a very short period of time. So here are a few experiences of what First years are likely to encounter.

The first experience is that unlike high school where one probably waited up to Form three to get serious, In campus, your final graduation mark starts from the minute you do your First CAT. (Continuous assessment Test). In some Universities, the score for First year doesn’t count for much, but it is still is taken into account. For instance, in Moi University, the First Year probably accounts for between 5 to 10% of the Final grade. At University of Nairobi, the First Year mark is also small. At JKUAT, all the years are the same, so you might want to work hard right from the start if you are going to enroll there.
Private Universities mainly use the GPA grading system and so the years(and some courses) might be weighted . The GPA system is just like the one used in KCSE where each mark corresponds to a certain grade. For instance, if you score between 70% and 100% , that would be an A. Public Universities on the other hand use the numerical grading system, where the average mark for the total number of Units is calculated. If you get over 70%, then you have a First Class Honors, If you get between 60 and 69%, then you have a Second Upper Class Honors, a score of between 50 and 59 % is a Second Lower while a score of between 40 and 49% is a Pass grade. So much for explaining the grading system.

Then there is what is known as Gold Rush. This is where the male students will be dumping their third and fourth year girlfriends for the First Year Students. This is viewed as a competition of sorts for the male students and whoever gets the most beautiful Fresher gets the bagging rights. And on the lifestyle front, there are those who will immerse themselves in the Christian Union, there are those who will immerse themselves in the library while others will be party animals. Still, some others will find a balance between different activities. Handling money also proves to be a challenge to some students, since many Freshers have not usually had to be given lots of money to manage on their own. If you went through Campus or are still in campus, you share your experience in the Comment section below.


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