Positive Quote For Today

"We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty."— Maya Angelou

Why I Dropped Out of JKUAT

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This is the main campus of JKUAT where I enrolled in May 2007 to pursue a degree in electronic & computer engineering. More about my time at JKUAT in the story below.

Back in 2006 when I was a callow 18-year old teen, I joined a network marketing company called GNLD. I somewhat enjoyed being part of the company where I picked up a passion for reading motivational books. But while I strived to sell the expensive GNLD products and recruit more friends into the company, my parents were worried I might get carried away by GNLD and forfeit my university education.

As it happened, I gave up doing business with GNLD and in May 2007, I matriculated at a local university called JKUAT to pursue a degree in electronic & computer engineering. My parents were enormously proud of my enrollment at JKUAT. But guess what! I eventually dropped out of the university in 2009, something I have repeatedly talked about on this blog.

Of late, I have been reflecting on the reasons why I had to drop out of JKUAT. And today, I thought it wise to share those reasons on this lovely blog of mine, hoping to enlighten youngsters out there on what they should and shouldn't do at university if they are to finish their degree courses.

The chief reason that led me to drop out of JKUAT was my lack of passion for the engineering course I was pursuing at the university. Prior to joining JKUAT, I had come to believe that true learning should be intellectually and emotionally arousing. But when I joined JKUAT, I found it hard to live by that principle. Just like my classmates, I did a lot of rote learning, such as memorizing a complex formula known as Schrodinger's wave equation, so that I could pass my exams.

There came a day in 2007 when we did not attend classes at JKUAT since it was a public holiday. Gosh! I felt relieved and wished we could have more such public holidays. That clearly shows how I wasn't passionate about the engineering course I was studying for, doesn't it?

Well, I did sense there is beauty in the field of electronic & computer engineering - the way electricity and magnetism interact to create the magic we see in computers; the way algebra and calculus are used to analyze electrical circuits - but somehow, that beauty eluded my understanding. How frustrating!

I remember wondering whether the likes of Mwai Kibaki had to understand during their university days the abstruse concepts we were learning at JKUAT. (Mwai Kibaki was the then Kenya's president, who, in my eyes, was the embodiment of success.)

Even though the engineering course turned out to be a tough nut to crack for me, I could have diligently applied myself to understanding it. But the problem was, my attention was split between pursuing the course and applying to four top American colleges. I would spend hours revising for the SAT exams and going to Starehe Boys' Centre, my high school, to get the recommendation letters that the American colleges required.

When I went to Starehe, I would meet with James Rafiq, a dashing former schoolmate who was then working for Starehe as a computer technician or something. Rafiq, on noting how frequently I visited Starehe to get recommendation letters, joked to one secretary in the school that if she ever saw a young man with a desire to study in America, that was most likely me.

Due to my lack of concentration on the engineering course I was pursuing at JKUAT, I flunked a first year unit called Material Science. I was on a long holiday, eagerly waiting to hear from the American colleges I had appleied for admission, when JKUAT authorities informed me I had failed the unit and asked me to retake its exam.

Thinking that I would fly to America, I went to JKUAT and retook the Material Science exam without revising for it. Not surprisingly, I again flunked the unit. What's worse, I was rejected by all the four American colleges I had applied for admission.

I am sure if I had passed all my first year units at JKUAT, I would have felt encouraged to continue pursuing my engineering course when I reported back to the university in May 2008 for my second year. But since JKUAT had a strict policy that no student could proceed to third year without passing all first and second year units, my failure to pass Material Science demoralized me. That was the third reason which led me to drop out of JKUAT in 2009.

Although I didn't finish my engineering course at JKUAT, I treasure the experiences I had at the university and the lasting friendships I formed there. As for what lessons youngsters can learn from my experiences at JKUAT, I will leave it up to them to deduce for themselves from what I have narrated. Adieu!

RECOMMENDATION: If you've enjoyed the above story on why I dropped out of JKUAT, you might also enjoy another one on "What Happened When I Repeated Class" which I wrote a few years ago. Just click on that link in blue to dive straight into the story.


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Thinking Like a Harvard Graduate

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With permission, I have extracted this picture-quote from a website called The Quotes Master. All rights reserved worldwide.

While going through an old Reader's Digest magazine earlier this year, I came across an interesting tidbit of information about a Harvard graduate who went back to Harvard to address its students. He told the students that the world would expect so much from them and that if they committed small blunders, they would be ridiculed. If, for example, they gave less change to a customer, they would be asked, "And you were in Harvard?"

I ardently wanted to attend Harvard when I was applying to top American colleges in 2007. And when Harvard rejected me during that application round, I decided to reapply to the college. In my efforts to make my dream come true, I created what I called a "dream book" in which I pasted photos of Harvard College that I had cut out from a Harvard prospectus. As it happened, Harvard again rejected me when I applied to the college in 2009.

If I had attained my dream of attending Harvard, I am now wondering how the world would have reacted to the blunders I have committed over the last twelve years. Such blunders as doing lots of lying, exaggerations and plagiarism in the stories I have written, texting friends silly messages and running away from home. The blunders would definitely have left the world asking me, "And you were in Harvard?"

I have also been slow at understanding instructions. Last year for instance, a music producer named Lenny Ndirangu told me to alight near a certain footbridge on Thika superhighway here in Kenya when I was commuting to his studio to record a song I had composed. It being the first time I was travelling to Lenny's studio, I got out of a matatu on a bus stop next to a road that was under another road, thinking it was the spot Lenny had told me to alight on.

Upon alighting, I phoned Lenny to inform him that I had arrived. Lenny quickly came to fetch me. But alas! He couldn't see me. I then crossed to the other side of the road to see if he was there. He wasn't there either, and the frustrations of him not finding me began to grate on his nerves. Sounding irritated, he instructed me to hand over my phone to a motorbike rider who knew the place well. After the rider told Lenny exactly where we were, he asked me to get onto his motorbike so that he could take me to where Lenny was, a service that cost me Ksh. 50.

When I finally met Lenny, he informed me that the place I had alighted - with one road underneath another - was an underpass. He explained to me that a footbridge was the structure next to us for pedestrians to cross over to the other side of the superhighway. It turned out that I didn't know the difference between an underpass and a footbridge, an ignorance that would have left Lenny wondering "And you were in Harvard?" if I had attended Harvard.

I am now endeavoring to think like a Harvard graduate. Well, from my interactions with three friends who attended Harvard, I understand each Harvard graduate is unique and different.

One of the friends is Paul Byatta who once agreed to meet with me sometime in 2011, and since then, he has never responded to my messages. Another is David Mbau who was very helpful when I was reapplying to Harvard in 2009 but he abruptly stopped communicating with me in early 2011, probably after realizing from the silly emails I sent him that I was immature. And the other friend who attended Harvard is David Mwakima who has been very supportive in my blogging hobby.

However different each Harvard graduate is, I tend to think they are all wise, brilliant and discerning. That's why I have resolved to be thinking like a Harvard graduate. I will strive to be thinking happy, cheerful and confident thoughts, thus making each day count regardless of the challenges I face. In doing so, I hope to remain perfectly at ease and deeply at peace wherever I am in this world.

My beloved reader, I challenge you to also think like a Harvard graduate regardless of where you attended school or the level of education you reached. Entertain only positive thoughts in your mind and purge from your thinking any thoughts that are depressing. Be thoughtful in all you do and conduct yourself in a manner that will command the respect and attention of the world. Adieu!

NEW! NEW! NEW! If you missed my social media update three days ago, let me take this opportunity to inform you that I have produced a new hymn which is available in the videos' section of this blog. Just click on the "videos" link on the menu at the top of this blog to access the hymn.


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Bible Quote

"Always be full of joy in the Lord; I say it again, rejoice! Let everyone see that you are unselfish and considerate in all you do... Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything; tell God your needs and don't forget to thank Him for His answers. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand."

~Phillipians 4:4-7 (TLB)

About the Author

Name: Thuita J. Maina
Nationality: Kenyan
Lives in: Kiserian, Rift Valley, Kenya
Mission: To inspire the world to godly living, one person at a time.

Just For Laughs

There was this drunkard named Azoge who loved drinking at Josiah's Bar. On being told a certain Hon. Nanga was flying to America to be conferred a law degree so that he could be admitted to the bar, Azoge replied, "Why fly all the way to America to be admitted to the bar while you can get into Josiah's Bar any time?"

The 7 Deadly Sins

  1. Pride
  2. Envy
  3. Gluttony
  4. Lust
  5. Anger
  6. Greed
  7. Sloth

Author's Note

I am learning to treat life as a journey, not a destination. So I am trying to enjoy each day as I anticipate to fulfill my dreams especially meeting my soulmate and traveling abroad. Tomorrow may never be mine.

Fun Facts

  1. The fear of having no cell-phone service, running out of battery, or losing sight of your phone is called Nomophobia, reportedly affecting 66% of people.
  2. A single Google search needs more computing power than it took to send Apollo 11 to the moon. The Apollo computer was less equipped than a modern toaster.
  3. Besides being some of the biggest names in the tech industry, HP, Apple, Google and Microsoft share another commonality. They all started in garages.
~Extracted from Codingforums.com

Health Tip

So many of us take for granted the wonderful construction of the human body and the workings of its various parts. Some of us even expect it to function efficiently with less than the minimum care and attention. Learn the much you can about your body and how the care of it can help to give you that greatest blessing of all - good health.

Wonders of the Modern World

  1. The Simplon Tunnel
  2. The Sky-scrapers of New York
  3. The Boulder Dam of Colorado
  4. The Panama Canal
  5. The Golden Gate Bridge
  6. The Taj Mahal at Agra in India
  7. The North Sea Oil Drilling Rigs

Great Example for Politicians

"My life in politics was a joy. I loved campaigns and I loved governing. I always tried to keep things moving in the right direction, to give more people a chance to live their dreams, to lift people's spirits, and to bring them together. That's the way I kept score."

~Bill Clinton

Scientific Marvels

  1. Space travel
  2. Heart surgery
  3. Fibre-optics communication
  4. Concorde
  5. Computers & Radios
  6. Anesthetics
  7. The atom bomb

My Supreme Desire

Although I'd like to be rich and famous, my supreme desire is to be radiant: to radiate health, cheerfulness, calm courage and goodwill. I wish to live without hate, guilt, worry, jealousy, cynicism and envy. I wish to be honest, natural, confident, clean in mind and body - ready to say "I do not know" if it be so and to treat all men with kindness - to meet any loss, failure, criticism and rejection unabashed and unafraid.

Greatest American Presidents

  1. Abraham Lincoln
  2. George Washington
  3. Thomas Jefferson
  4. Franklin Roosevelt
  5. Theodore Roosevelt
  6. Woodrow Wilson
  7. Andrew Jackson

Making Peace With the Past

"Dwell not on your past. Use it to illustrate a point, then leave it behind. Nothing really matters except what you do now in this instant of time. From this moment onwards you can be an entirely different person, filled with love and understanding, ready with an outstretched hand, uplifted and positive in every thought and deed."

~Eileen Caddy

Toughest Colleges to Get Into

  1. MIT
  2. Princeton
  3. Harvard
  4. Yale
  5. Stanford
  6. Brown
  7. Columbia

Why You Should Trust God

"Men and women who turn their lives over to God will find out that He can make a lot more out of their lives than they can. He will deepen their joys, expand their vision, quicken their minds, strengthen their muscles, lift their spirits, multiply their blessings, increase their opportunities and pour out peace."

~Ezra Taft Benson

The 7 Greatest Scientists

  1. Albert Einstein
  2. Isaac Newton
  3. Galileo Galilei
  4. Nikola Tesla
  5. Aristotle
  6. Archimedes
  7. Charles Darwin

You Matter

"Always be yourself. Never try to hide who you are. The only shame is to have shame. Always stand up for what you believe in. Always question what other people tell you. Never regret the past; it's a waste of time. There's a reason for everything. Every mistake, every moment of weakness, every terrible thing that has happened to you, grow from it. The only way you can ever get the respect of others is when you show them that you respect yourself and most importantly, do your thing and never apologize for being you."


The Most Industrialized Nations

  1. The United States
  2. Japan
  3. Germany
  4. France
  5. United Kingdom
  6. Italy
  7. Canada

Keys to Success

"...in his effort to withstand temptation, to economize, to exercise thrift, to disregard the superficial for the real - the shadow for the substance; to be great yet small, in his effort to be patient in the laying of a firm foundation; to so grow in skill and knowledge that he shall place his services in demand by reason of his intrinsic and superior worth. This is the key that unlocks every door of opportunity, and all others fail."

~Booker T. Washington

The 7 Social Sins

  1. Politics without principle
  2. Wealth without work
  3. Pleasure without conscience
  4. Knowledge without character
  5. Commerce without morality
  6. Worship without sacrifice
  7. Science without humanity

Cherish What You Love

"Cherish your visions, cherish your ideals, cherish the music that stirs in your heart, the beauty that forms in your mind, the loveliness that drapes your purest thoughts - for out of them will grow all heavenly environment, of these if you but remain true to them, your world will at last be built."~James Allen

The World's Largest Cities

  1. London in England
  2. New York in the United States
  3. Tokyo in Japan
  4. Berlin in Germany
  5. Chicago in the United States
  6. Shanghai in China
  7. Paris in France

Benefits of Optimism

"In terms of success, optimistic people out perform their pessimistic colleagues. Research shows that they are consistently promoted higher and make more money while working fewer hours than those who think pessimistically. Optimists also contribute more significantly to social progress. It is the optimists who start and run successful companies, who win elections and carry out reforms, and who make breakthroughs in the realms of science and technology."

~Pepe Minambo

The World's Greatest Lakes

  1. Caspian Sea in the Commonwealth of Independent States, C.I.S. (formerly U.S.S.R)
  2. Lake Superior in North America
  3. Victoria Nyanza in Central Africa
  4. Aral Sea in C.I.S.
  5. Lake Huron in North America
  6. Lake Michigan in North America

Demonstrating His Love

"Take your communication for instance - the way you address others. It ought to be with loving, gracious and edifying words. Never talk people down. Never use words that hurt and demean people. Communicate excellently with others without destroying their self-image or making them feel sorry for themselves. Talk to people in a way that they never forget the excellence of your words, the love and grace of Christ that you communicated. It's how God wants us to love."

~Dr. Chris Oyakhilome

World's Longest Rivers

  1. Missouri-Mississipi (U.S.)
  2. Amazon (Brazil)
  3. Nile (Egypt)
  4. Yangtse (China)
  5. Lena (Russia)
  6. Zaire (Central Africa)
  7. Niger (West Africa)